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Recipe : Poached Rhubarb Pie

Either a pre-made pastry shell, pre-made shortcrust pastry, or to make pastry yourself, I like this recipe at the moment
About 6-8 decent sized sticks of rhubarb (like the thickness of almost a broom handle, not like a pencil)
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup-ish of flaked almonds

1. Once the pastry is baked you don't need anything else to go into the oven, so make it/roll it out and put it in your dish and bake it until it's golden brown. You might need to bake it blind for 10 minutes or so, then finish it off to colour it.

2. Once your pastry is ready, put it aside and put the sugar into a pan with 1 1/2 cups of water over a medium high heat. While that's heating, chop your rhubarb into thumb sized chunks.

3. Add them to the sugar water when it's started bubbling.

4. Keep an eye on it! It will quickly go from firm and stringy to soft and tender! When it starts to flake apart when you nudge it, start scooping it out with a slotted spoon and put it into a sieve, over a bowl.

5. Quite a lot of fluid will come out, but look how tender those pieces are. They completely melt in your mouth.

6. Pour the extra back into the pan and keep the heat quite high so that the remaining fluid reduces by about two thirds. It'll make the sweetest little sauce.

7. While your rhubarb is cooling, spread the ground almonds out onto the base with your fingers, they do a good job of absorbing any residual liquid from the rhubarb so that the pastry doesn't get too soggy.

8. Use a spoon and carefully place the rhubarb all over the pastry base. (Keep an eye on your sauce!)

9. So yummy! Your sauce should have thickened up a bit by now and be pretty low down in the pan. Pour it into a container to cool down. Check out the amazing colour!

10. Now you don't even have to toast the almonds, you could just throw them straight on, but I like the flavour, so if you do too, just stick some foil on a baking sheet, throw the almonds on and sprinkle with a little sugar. Put them into the oven for a couple of minutes on a medium high heat. I'm serious, check them once a minute, they burn so easily! Then take them out, let them cool a little, then scatter over the rhubarb.

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Sources : Poached Rhubarb Pie Photo | Poached Rhubarb Pie Article
"I doubt whether the world holds for any one a more soul-stirring surprise than the first adventure with ice cream."

Quotes : An Ice Cream Adventure : Heywood Broun
Broun was born in Brooklyn, the third of four children born to Heywood C. Broun and Henrietta Marie (née Brose) Broun.

He attended Harvard University, but did not earn a degree, instead commencing his professional career writing baseball stories in the sports section of the New York Morning Telegraph. Broun worked at the New York Tribune from 1912–1921, rising to drama critic before transferring to the New York World (1921–28). It was at the World where his syndicated column, It Seems to Me, began. In 1928, he moved to the Scripps-Howard newspapers, including the New York World-Telegram, where it appeared until he moved it to the New York Post, just before his death.

Broun was known as a fairly decent drama critic. However, he once classified Geoffrey Steyne as the worst actor on the American stage. Steyne sued Broun, but a judge threw the case out. The next time Broun reviewed a production with Steyne in the cast, he left the actor out of the review. However, in the final sentence, he wrote, "Mr. Steyne's performance was not up to its usual standard."

In 1933, Broun along with New York Evening Post Editor Joseph Cookman, John Eddy of The New York Times and Allen Raymond of the New York Herald Tribune helped to found The Newspaper Guild.

In 1938 Broun helped found the weekly tabloid Connecticut Nutmeg, soon renamed Broun's Nutmeg.

The Newspaper Guild sponsors an annual Heywood Broun Award for outstanding work by a journalist, especially work that helps correct an injustice. (Read More)

Recipes : S'Mores Rice Krispie Treats

5 tablespoons butter
6 cups Rice Krispie cereal
1 10 oz. package miniature marshmallows 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
2 cups milk chocolate chocolate chips
1 8 oz. package Jet-Puffed StackerMallows or you can choose a bag of the regular size marshmallows
10 frozen mini Hershey milk chocolate candy bars, broken into individual squares I found that if they were frozen they were easier to stick into the marshmallows and didn't melt as quickly even though they still melted.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Prepare a 9 X 13-inch baking dish by generously spraying it with cooking spray.

3. In a large saucepan over medium-low heat, melt butter.

4. Add the miniature marshmallows to the pan and stir until they are melted. Turn heat down to low. I know in most recipes it says to remove from heat when everything has melted, but I've found that it's easier to stir in the Rice Krispies if the marshmallow mixture is still warm. It becomes very difficult to stir and I find it hurts my wrist as it cools. Just tryin' to save you a trip to the doctor in the future. ;-)

5. Stir in the graham cracker crumbs.

6. Add the Rice Krispies and mix until thoroughly combined. (Teri shared a tip here which I thought was a really good idea and had never done before, but it worked really well! Spray the spatula or spoon that you're using to mix everything together with cooking spray so that it makes it easier to mix.)

7. Remove pan from heat and stir in chocolate chips. And yes, they will melt. Don't worry about it.

8. Pour mixture into prepared baking dish and press down with a rubber spatula so that it completely covers the pan. I find it easiest to spray my hands with cooking spray and flatten it that way (as long as it's just the family who will be eating them and yes, I do wash my hands first.).

9. Place the Stackermallows over the Rice Krispies so that they are completely covered.

10. Place into oven for marshmallows to brown for 15-17 minutes.

11. And this is where I used my little blow torch to make them a little browner.

12. Remove from oven and place a Hershey chocolate square into each marshmallow.

13. Allow to cool completely before cutting.

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Sources : S'Mores Rice Krispie Treats Photo | S'Mores Rice Krispie Treats Recipe
Herbs And Spices : Horseradish

"Horseradish Cooking Tips and Measures

• Horseradish is best used freshly grated and raw.

• Scrub with a stiff brush and peel off the dark skin before using horseradish.

• In larger roots, the core may be fibrous and bitter. Remove and discard the core, along with any green spots.

• Horseradish is like the allium family -- the finer it is chopped or grated, the more pungent the flavor.

• When grating horseradish, it is easiest to use a food processor . Cut the peeled root into cubes and pulse to the desired consistency. The fumes will be quite strong and can actually burn your nose and eyes. Be sure to open a window, remove the lid at arm's length, and turn your head away.

• For homemade prepared horseradish, just add white vinegar and salt to taste while processing. Store in a lidded glass jar in the refrigerator up to 6 weeks.

• Fold 1 Tablespoon fresh grated horseradish into stiffly-whipped heavy cream and salt to taste for a classic horseradish sauce to accompany beef dishes. Dill weed is also a tasty addition.

• Add 1 Tablespoon fresh grated horseradish to 1 cup applesauce for a piquant condiment to pork dishes. Apple Horseradish Sauce Recipe

• When serving horseradish, do not use silver. Horseradish will tarnish silver.

• If you grow your horseradish, the young, tender green leaves are edible in salads and may also be cooked.

• If you want to retain the spicy zing of horseradish in cooked dishes, add it at the end of the cooking process, after the dish has been removed from the heat."

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Sources : Horseradish Photo | Horseradish Article
News : US Government Dodging Food Issues

Were it not for the Oregon and Colorado ballot initiatives requiring labeling of some foods made with some genetic engineering, state ballots this year would be pretty much devoid of food, food safety and agricultural measures.

The only exception, besides those two, is found in Hawaii, where a double majority is sought for Hawaii Bonds for Agricultural Enterprises, known as Amendment 2.

It would allow the legislature to issue special purpose revenue bonds for loans and financial assistance to any agricultural enterprise. Currently, the Hawaii Legislature is limited to helping only those enterprises on, or serving, important agricultural lands. The double majority means that Amendment 2 must obtain a majority of all votes cast on this particular proposal and a majority of all those voting in the election.

The proposal expands on a state loan and assistance program that was itself established by the voters in 2006. A number of Hawaiian farm, business, and school groups have endorsed the measure.

The dearth of food, food safety and agriculture measures on the 2014 ballot is consistent with an overall decline in ballot questions this year, according to Ballotpedia, the online encyclopedia about American politics and elections.

Voters this year are deciding 158 statewide ballot measures in 42 states, and 12 of those were decided on election ballots earlier in the year, leaving just 146 for the Nov. 4 general election.

“2014 has an unusually low number of statewide ballot measures,” Ballotpedia reports. “The last time the number of statewide ballot measures was below 160 was 1988,” the Wisconsin-based tracking service noted.

Two of the 12 statewide ballot measures that were already decided did involve food and agricultural issues. More than 67 percent of Alabama voters approved Amendment 1 this past July 15. It ended an assessment refund to cotton producers while authorizing a commission of cotton producers to direct the assessments. Funds can now be used to promote peanuts, milk and cotton.

The other already-decided state ballot measure involving food and agriculture was in Missouri. On Aug. 5, that state passed a “Right to Farm” measure by the narrowest of margins, 50.12 to 49.88 percent. However narrowly, Missouri’s Amendment 1 did establish a “Right to Farm,” but it will likely be subject to interpretation by state courts.

That leaves the familiar replay of ballot measures seeking to require labeling in increasingly common situations where genetic engineering is involved in food production. This time, those campaigns are in Oregon and Colorado and follow the 2012 defeat in California, the 2013 rejection in Washington state, and the 2014 failure to qualify in Arizona.

Based on a mid-October poll showing that support for Oregon’s Measure 92 has fallen below the 50-percent mark, pollsters say the state’s voters are now “in flux” about the outcome.

Oregonians are getting a contested Measure 92 campaign, with the “No” side outraising the “Yes” side by $11.2 million to $6.2 million. That’s enough for both to put on a competitive campaign in the state’s relatively small media market.

The “No” on Initiative 105 campaign in Colorado has raised $11.2 million and still had $4 million in the bank as of mid-October, according to the Colorado Secretary of State’s office. It has both “ground” and “air” campaigns involving direct mail, voter turnout, net and broadcast campaign messages. Those efforts have been non-stop since early September.

The Colorado Right to Know GMO committee has raised less than $442,000 and had only a few thousand in cash on hand as of mid-October. That’s not enough for a statewide campaign, and it’s apparently been written off by those who target political contributions for the organic industry.

The Suffolk University poll of top Colorado races reported by USA Today yesterday also contained a question Proposition 105 , related to labeling genetically modified food. It shows the measure is failing 29.8 percent “yes” to 49.2 percent “no” with 21 percent undecided.

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Sources : Ballot Photo | Food Issues Article
Recipes : BLT Pita Pockets

20 slices turkey bacon
1/2 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise (I prefer the Hellman’s brand)
2 ripe avocados, peeled and coarsely chopped
1/2 teaspoon white wine or red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
4 vine-ripe tomatoes
4 cups green leaf or romaine lettuce
6 whole wheat pita pocket breads (about 6-inches across)

1. Cook the bacon on a griddle or skillet over medium-high heat until crisp, setting aside to drain on a paper-towel lined plate.

2. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, avocado and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper. Slice the tomatoes thinly.

3. Cut pita breads in half and open the pockets. Spoon a dollop of the avocado mixture into the pocket and fill each pita with bacon, lettuce, and tomatoes – dividing all ingredients evenly between the pita breads.

4. Serve immediately.

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Sources : BLT Pita Pockets Photo | BLT Pita Pockets Article