Sunday, April 22, 2012

Around The Culinary World

Good evening everyone! We cover some interesting and varied ground in our weekly trips through the culinary news cycle. We find stories ranging from product recalls, to best of lists to great ideas to organizing your kitchen. Every week provides us with some new, exciting, occasionally odd and unique to enjoy. This week, more so than others, the news shifted to "odd". Every story that we're sharing this week features some strange circumstance, unusual food offering, bizarre eating habit or some other culinary oddity. We didn't save up these stories - we didn't even try for this 'theme' it just so happened that the culinary news this week was - well - weird. Let's dive into this week's culinary oddities stories!

Drinking soft drinks is bad for your health. This much is almost a given anymore. Even those who enjoy the beverage on a daily basis know that Coke, Pepsi or whatever name their preferred carbonated sugar water is sold under is, in the end, bad for their health. (Yes, even the zero calorie versions are bad for you as well...) It turns out, one woman's obsession to Coca-Cola was more than bad for her health; it killed her. A 30 year old woman from New Zealand who consumed around 2 gallons (!) of Coca-Cola PER DAY died last week of a heart attack. While doctors are not sure as of yet to the exact reason of her death (popular theories include hypokalemia - low potassium in your blood supply, or even caffeine overdose) it is almost certain that her diet (which also included heavy smoking) was the contributing factor. You can read more about this story HERE.

Always in moderation. 

Baseball stadium food exists in its own world. By some magical property, the food served up in our nation's ballparks transforms from ordinary hotdogs, nachos and street vendor fare into culinary wonders of the world. There are foods at a ballpark that can never be duplicated. Why does a ballpark hotdog simply taste better than any other hotdog on the planet? The world may never know, but the fact remains, ballpark food (while expensive and horribly bad for you) is a wonderful adventure for your tastebuds.

Riding on that wave, more and more modern ballparks have been taking advantage of their fans' love for ballpark food and expanding their offerings into unique (and absolutely delicious) offerings. For example, Target Field, the home to the Minnesota Twins (Go Twins!) has a varied menu full of culinary delights (this isn't your dad's ballpark menu). However, sometimes a ballpark can get carried away and begin to offer products that aren't revolutionary or even unique - just over the top. The Daily Meal has composed a list of the 10 most over the top stadium food offerings - and even a avid ballpark food lover such as myself can admit - these dishes go too far. Check out the full list HERE.

THAT is 10,000 calories worth of burger. (Serves 10 - 12) 

There is a lot of fraud and deception when it comes to retail settings. Commercials businesses are trying to sell their products to as many consumers as possible and they will adapt their message accordingly to assure that they can tap into each and every potential market. Even if that message 'bends' the truth from time to time.

The one place you think you're fairly safe from such marketing is the grocery store, however, right? Sure, while the products themselves may not be honest (advertising "gluten free" like it has some form of diet benefit) or (saying "whole wheat" when it is anything BUT whole wheat) but if your grocery store labels a certain cut of fish behind the butcher's counter as cod - then it's cod...right? Well, it turns out that might not always be the case. recently ran a story on the 8 biggest food frauds at your local grocery store. Some are a result of less than honest grocers, some are the result of less than reputable suppliers. All are a reason for you to pay a little more attention to what you're really buying the next time you go to the grocery store. Check out the full story HERE.

Shelves and shelves of LIES! (*possibly) 

Foods that go to far, foods that are fraudulent - why not segue right into foods that don't deserve to exist anymore? That's right, there are certain foods that are simply overproduced, a mockery of what they're trying to duplicate or that just don't serve a purpose. For the most part, these products always exist in one place - you local mall's food court. Bon Appetit has drudged up 10 of those foods and is calling for them to be axed. Check out the 10 most 'ban worthy' food court offerings HERE.

Actually, ice cream doesn't really NEED improvement...thanks anyway. 

I told you it was a weird (and brief) week of culinary news. Hopefully our recipes this week won't follow that trend! (We're not planning on that happening - but you never know...) We've got a lot of recipes to share this week. Maggie will get us started on Tuesday night with a new variation on an American classic. I'll follow her on Wednesday night with a brand new use for one of my favorite food groups. Later on in the week, Maggie will share a recipe for a special treat that you're sure to love and I'll be sure to throw in a recipe for cornbread that we made up on the fly - with tasty results. That's 4 (4!) recipes for this week! There's sure to be something for everyone to enjoy in this batch of recipes. Stop in Tuesday night to see what Maggie has cooking. Until then,


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