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Cooking

  • Bananas are actually a large herb, not really a fruit!

    The banana tree originated in India and eventually found its way through the tropical regions of the world, namely, Africa, Latin America, Australia and Southeast Asia.

    If you want to get technical however, the banana is not a tree, nor is the yummy yellow edible a fruit. The “tree” is actually a large herb and the banana is seedless and thus, botanically speaking, not a fruit.

  • The full flavor of pecans add a unique, rich taste to many foods

    You say PEE-can, I say pa-KAWN, or so the saying goes. However, a new national survey finds PEE-can is the overwhelming choice among Americans.

    Nearly half of all pecan consumers prefer this pronunciation of the all-American tree nut, with the rest of the nation roughly split between pa-KAWN and PEE-kawn.

    With April being National Pecan Month, now is the perfect time for all of us to start taking advantage of the versatility of pecans and reaping the health benefits at the same time.

    PECAN HISTORY

  • Follow these tips to help ensure healthy bones

    Building strong bones is a lot like building a healthy balance in your “calcium bank account.” Bones are living tissue and constantly in a state of turnover, making calcium deposits and withdrawals daily. Bones don’t come with a lifetime guarantee. They need continuing maintenance or they can weaken and break.

  • Crescent rolls eliminated from tasty French onion and beef entree

    Over the last few months, I’ve been trying to cut down on excessive fats and carbohydrates in my diet. I have been rather successful at it, losing almost 30 pounds in the last three months.

    Now this doesn’t mean I’ve stopped making and eating anything that contains excessive fat or carbs. I’ve just learned recipes can be adjusted to be healthier and still taste just as good, and in some cases, even better.

  • Use cumin to perk up bland foods like beans, lentils and rice

    Cumin (Indian name Jeera) is a pungent spice used in many traditional Indian dishes.

    It is a staple of most curry spice mixes (though not all) and lends itself many dishes of other countries. Its supposed medicinal qualities are numerous, although in today’s western medicine it is used largely only in veterinary medicine.

    Its alleged health indications in the human are as an alleviant for stomach upsets and flatulence and in pregnancy to aid lactation and to reduce morning sickness.

  • Sauerbraten is a German specialty marinated for several days

    Sauerbraten (sour roast) is considered by most to be Germany’s National dish, but while the basis of the recipe remains the same, variations do occur from region to region.

    Traditionally made with a beef roasting joint (topside or similar) the meat is marinated for two to three days in vinegar and/or beer, spices such as cloves, juniper berries, allspice and peppercorns, bay leaves and onions; and then braised in the marinade for a long period, resulting in very tender melt-in-the-mouth meat.

  • Tilapia is delicious and inexpensive compared to other fish

    Wild fish resources are shrinking around the world because of over-fishing and pollution, and tilapia (te-la-pe-a) aquaculture is being examined as a great way to help out.

    Unlike many other fish, tilapia can eat almost any kind of plant or microorganism found in water, and thrive in just about any conditions (as long as the water temperature is above 50-degrees. Since tilapia are easy to care for, some fishermen and farmers are looking to the water as a farming resource to be developed.

  • These chicken and shrimp recipes share a common thread

    Occasionally, I receive a favorite recipe from a reader that also includes a history of when and where it came from and so on.

    A few weeks ago, I received a fascinating e-mail from Jeris Hewett concerning recipes for Carolina Chicken and Shrimp Middleton that he shared with me.

    He had tried to reach me at home earlier but instead wound up talking with my wife for quite a while! She thoroughly enjoyed the conversation concerning his cooking prowess and told me about it when I got home.

  • Eat for a healthier lifestyle by following dietary guidelines

    It is important to follow the dietary guidelines recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Health and Human Services. These guidelines are designed to help Americans choose foods they need to support good health. They are based on the following tips:

    Select a variety of foods

  • This traditional Irish comfort food is easy in the slow cooker

    What's the national dish of Ireland? Corned beef and cabbage, you say? Since March has undoubtedly become “Irish Awareness Month,” I thought it would be fun to explore the truth behind yet another Irish myth.