Archive for February, 2014

The Scoop: 74,476 Reasons to Get a Bigger Pizza

We’ve boiled down the latest food news for you to peck at:

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10 Easy Ways to Eat More Fruits and Veggies

As a registered dietitian, I constantly find myself giving this advice to clients: Eat more fruits and vegetables. Why? Overall, they’re low in calories, high in fiber and water, and loaded with nutrients. Eating plenty of them daily can help you maintain or lose weight — and ward off various diseases.

They also add so much color and flavor to food that I’m always surprised so many people don’t eat them regularly. How much you need depends on your age, gender and activity level, but in general the five-a-day number is a good rule: two cups of fruits, three cups of vegetables. (To put that in perspective, the average American eats only about 1 1/2 cups of produce.) Find out what counts as a cup here.

If you’re not used to eating so many fruits and vegetables in a day, it can seem overwhelming to think of adding them to your diet. That’s why I usually have clients “walk through” a day of their typical eating and ask them to find room for fruits and vegetables — by adding them to existing meals or swapping other foods for them. Here are some of the ideas they came up with:

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Now You Can Eat Dinner Hoisted Two Hundred Feet in the Air

There are some among us that count themselves as daredevils. They think nothing of skydiving from an airplane, riding a rickety roller coaster or eating an entire meal from Taco Bell. How do you take these people out to dinner? You can’t sit them down at a regular table. They’ll be bored to tears. Thankfully, there is now a service that combines food with death defying stupidity.

Dinner in the Sky is a company that does just that. You sit at a table with your friends and then the entire thing is lifted 50 or so meters into the atmosphere. Note, the table does not raise via complicated and safe machinery. There is nary an elevator in sight. No, the whole thing is pulled up via a giant crane, to satisfy even the most self destructive among us.

Don’t worry. Chefs are hoisted up as well so you can be sure to enjoy a delicious meal (which may also be your last.) If you are so inclined, the company also offers the same service for business meetings, weddings and even makeshift Internet cafes.

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Vegetarian Comfort Foods That Won’t Make You Miss the Meat

America’s meat dependency deserves a break. Sure, meaty meals can taste great and satisfying, but eating less of it is a smart choice, both for your health and the environment. Eating less meat can help lower your risk of heart disease and your carbon footprint. But it can often be a challenge to figure out just how to transform your favorite meaty standards into enticing vegetarian alternatives that deliver on flavor and satisfaction. Here are several classic comfort foods and their vegetarian makeovers.

Instead of: Chicken Pot Pie
Try: Vegetarian Pot Pie
You might be surprised to find that chicken is not essential to a mouthwatering pot pie, as proven here.

Instead of: Shepherd’s Pie
Try: Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie
Layers of spaghetti squash, lentils and vegetables and creamy mashed potatoes make this a five-star recipe.

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Beat The Wheat: Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Icing

AKA They Say It’s Your Birthday

Happy birthday. Wow, you look fantastic! Let’s have some cake, shall we?

Birthdays can be tough when you have celiac disease. You crave the cakes, pies and cupcakes you’ve always had, and most commercially made gluten-free cakes from a bakery or specialty store just don’t cut it. They’re dry and gritty, or way too gummy, and just not very celebratory.

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Comfort Fest: Top 5 Chocolate Cookies

Churning out a batch of gooey or crispy chocolate cookies means you can get a weeks’ worth of desserts done all at once. Or, freeze the dough and make each cookie as needed.

1. Bobby’s Triple Chocolate Cookies

Bittersweet chocolate, unsweetened chocolate and semisweet chocolate chips mean Bobby Flay’s cookies are the ultimate in chocolate decadence. Add in white chocolate chips and pecans to give these treats added flavor and texture.

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Artists Undertake Expansive Sugar Cube City in Harlem

Some people like sugar in their coffee or their soda, or as a minor additive in their pasta sauce. Others, however, know that sugar was meant to act as the building blocks of a vast and extensive cityscape. A group of artists in Harlem count as some of these folks and are putting their sugar where their mouth is.

Introducing Sugar Metropolis, a community-driven arts space made entirely out of sugar cubes. The idea is simple: make the biggest and most awesome city imaginable entirely out of sugar. Appearing in the appropriately named Sugar Hill district of Harlem, the project is expected to use over 500,000 sugar cubes. That’s quite a lot of sugar highs and then unavoidable crashes.

The coolest part is that anyone who visits the metropolis is invited to add to it. Sugar is not the purview of artist alone. However, the project still needs some funds to make sure it happens on schedule. Thus, a Kickstarter was born. If you care at all about a gigantic sugary dystopia, you should kick in a few crystals.

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Hump Day Snack: Mardi Gras Monkey Bread Muffins

Let’s face it: We’re a long way from the good intentions of New Year’s resolutions. In fact, we’re now less than a week away from celebrating Mardi Gras with beads, booze, beignets and the grand traditions of Bourbon Street. The locals often celebrate with a classic cinnamon-laced king cake topped with sugary glaze and purple, green and gold sprinkles (and hiding a tiny plastic baby baked inside for good luck). But if you prefer more bite-size pastries, this recipe for Mardi Gras Monkey Bread Muffins combines whole-wheat flour and a buttery cinnamon and sugar mixture to make individual adaptations, all drizzled with swirls of the festive traditional icing. No plastic baby required!

Celebrate Mardi Gras with even more New Orleans inspired recipes from Cooking Channel:

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Here is a Restaurant That Served Cat Food to People

Cats may look at their owners with a measure of disinterest, but that doesn’t mean we don’t love the heck out of those feisty fur-balls. Speaking of, just a few scant days ago was a holiday to honor said felines called Cat Day. Never heard of it? That’s because it’s only in Japan.

To honor this, um, claw-iday, the makers of popular cat food brand Mon Petit operated a pop-up restaurant for the cat obsessed. The waitstaff were dressed like cats, cat ears were given to each customer and there were even a series of digital games designed to turn people into, you guessed it, cats. On the menu? An array of cat food, of course. Don’t worry. It only looked like the food your cat greedily ingests. It was actually created by a renowned French chef  Phillipe Batton to look exactly like cat food. It tasted like people food, although sometimes it’s a fine line nowadays.

One can assume this purr-fect eatery will show up again next year, so you had better get your cat ears and plane tickets ready.

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Alie & Georgia’s Ultimate Oscars Party

The Oscars are here! At last! We’ve weathered storms and polar vortexes and Super Bowls and lesser awards shows and junkets and speculation, but now it’s finally time to pull on sweatpants and watch hungry actresses in priceless gowns pretend like they’re not upset that they lost the honor of a lifetime! All that suspense and good bone structure can make a gawker hungry, so here are some suggested courses if you’re planning an Oscars get-together with friends. Or just yourself. It’s a long ceremony, people.

Red Carpet Velvet Cupcakes

Satisfy your sugar craving and start the evening off right by wolfing down some of Bobby Deen’s low(er)-calorie red velvet cupcakes. When you look in the mirror, ask yourself who you are wearing, and then answer, Frosting. It’s okay, we’ve all been there.

Get the Recipe: Red Velvet Cupcakes

Too thirsty to eat? Make our potable, potent Red Velvet Cupcake Cocktail. Everyone’s a winner on Oscar night.

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