Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Covering the Indy Restaurant Trade

Restaurant Report is written for the midscale and upscale segment of the independent restaurant market. It's written for the chefs, owners, management and staff teams, and provides a valuable online resource which offers information that supports the mission of independent restaurants and food service outlets. In addition to the website, RR publishes a free weekly e-mail newsletter. The newsletter features new content on the site as well as industry discussion on a variety of topics. Lots of good resources, including a great links page.

Restaurant Report Online http://www.restaurantreport.com

Thursday, June 23, 2005

The Birth of Nanofood

Researchers at the Netherlands' Wageningen University are working on food processing techniques that incorporate nanotechnology in a new field dubbed nanofood. A major part of the task, of course, is selling it to the public, says Frans Kampers, program manager of bio-nanotechnology at Wageningen. "Consumer acceptance and how they view nanotechnology in food really needs attention. We do not want to end up in the GMO (genetically modified organisms) situation. We have to be honest and truthful so that the consumer can balance the risks and the benefits of nanofoods." Kampers envisions using nanotechnology in two ways during the food production process -- on the processing line, where tiny sensors and diagnostic machines could detect harmful microbes and establish a more accurate shelflife for products, and as a means of creating food that can carry medicines and nutritional supplements via tiny edible capsules, or nanoparticles, to targeted spots in the body. And while the first application likely won't run into too much trouble, Kampers worries about consumer backlash against tinkering with the food supply. The nanoparticles that would be added to food include both "soft particles" -- those using common biological materials -- and "hard particles" made up of non-organic substances, such as silicon or ceramics, or materials that react with the body's heat or chemistry, such as polymers. And while the idea is still percolating in the lab, Kampers hopes to raise awareness of the possibilities among corporate food giants such as General Mills and Nestle. "The food industry is on average reluctant to adopt new technologies. We would like to show them what the possibilities are and what academia is working on and see if this triggers something. We would like to communicate that we are ready to help them."

Food Production Daily http://www.foodproductiondaily.com

Monday, June 13, 2005

Vegetarian Cooking

Colleen Patrick-Goudreau and Alka Chandna, the hosts of this engaging, energetic, and remarkably informative website - and DVD - demonstrate tantalizing yet easy-to-make dishes, packing each one full of nutritional facts and shopping tips. Including a helpful segment that provides a visual aid to finding vegetarian products in the supermarket, the Compassionate Cooks also answer a number of frequently asked questions regarding vegetarianism. Featuring a feast for the eyes as well as for the palate, Colleen and Alka create decadent dairy-free desserts, demystify tofu and other soy products, emphasize fast and healthful meals, and present a gorgeous holiday centerpiece. Learn to create: Hearty Three Bean Chili, Chocolate Chip Cookies, Harvest-Stuffed Acorn Squash, Eggless Egg Salad, Magic Chocolate Cake, Veggie & Tofu Stir-fry with Peanut Sauce, and more.

Compassionate Cooks http://www.compassionatecooks.com

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Beyond the Spice Jar

Gusto! Spice Cakes are blocks of flavor that mix spices with flavor infusions to add visual and culinary flair to the kitchen. Advanced palates require complex and compelling flavors, and striking new presentations of age-old ingredients will inspire many cooks to try new dishes. Velissa Van Scoyoc doesn’t think zesty spices belong in boring jars. Her Gusto! Spice Cakes are colorful blocks of “visual aroma” that inspire cooks to spike dishes with exotic seasonings and flavor infusions. “I wanted to renew the value of spices using the latest in food technology,” Van Scoyoc says. Her spice jar reinvention nabbed a prize at the Industrial Designers Society of America’s inaugural Scientistic Invitational in May 2005. Each cake’s look reflects its origin and use, from the Parsley Hay Bale to the East India Mix. Chefs can grate, slice, or dissolve the blocks into other ingredients, though some might be tempted to bite into the Cocoa Framboise. Advanced palates require compelling flavors, and striking new presentations of age-old ingredients will inspire many cooks to try new dishes. Gusto! is still in the concept phase. But with culinary powders and artisanal pepper already expanding palates, we bet it won’t be long before this bold bite gets consumers cooking. The website is currently being redeveloped but promises to be up soon - worth watching.

Vivid Product Design http://www.vividpd.com/

Friday, June 10, 2005

What Does It All Mean?

The Meaning of Food is the companion website to a three-part PBS documentary series that explores our relationships to food and reveals the connection food has to our identity: personal, cultural, and familial. Everything about eating - including what we consume, how we acquire it, who prepares it, who’s at the table, and who eats first - is a form of communication that is rich with meaning. Our attitudes, practices, and rituals surrounding food are a window into our most basic beliefs about our world and ourselves. Features stories on topics such as the slow food movement, comfort foods, an edible schoolyard, family restaurants, gourmet dog food, kosher foods, kitchen gadgets, and food and literature. Includes lessons plans and related links.

The Meaning of Food http://www.pbs.org/opb/meaningoffood/

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Beyond Hot Dogs

Campfire cooking can be downright civilized. No matter how spectacular the scenery, meals around the campfire are often the highlight of the camper's day. Modern camp stoves and specialized cookware make the cook's job easier, but nothing beats the taste and appeal of a meal cooked over the campfire. Success at campfire cooking will encourage you to go camping more often. This site includes instructions on building a safe campfire, and recipes to broaden the menu
beyond hot dogs.

Campfire Cooking http://www.eartheasy.com/play_campfire_cooking.htm

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Practically Useless Information on Food and Drink

Practically Useless Information on Food and Drink Norman Kolpas' Practically Useless Information: Food And Drink gathers offbeat, unusual, interesting food trivia and drink facts, from the menu for the last dinner on the Titanic to official national food observances in September and the origins of 'roasting, Norman Kolpas' is coated with warm facts and fun fancy.An irresistible, jam-packed compendium of facts, figures, trivia, quotes, lists, anecdotes, and instructions on food and drink.The ultimate gift book for the epicure who has everything. It features such facts as the names and sizes of champagne bottles, step-by-step instructions on how to slice a banana without peeling it (or even cutting the peel), the menu served the night the Titanic sank, ten edible figures of speech, intriguing quotes on eating and drinking from Kenneth Grahame, William Shakespeare, and Charles Dickens. Clever, engaging, and easy to browse for fun. For people seeking a resource on esoteric information, it is indexed for easy access to specific topics.

ISBN 1401602053, Hardcover, 192 pages

Rutledge Hill Press http://www.rutledgehillpress.com

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Will Write For Food

Will Write For Food If your passion is food and you're unemployed or seeking a change, you may want to consider the food writing profession as presented by seasoned writer Dianne Jacob in Will Write For Food: The Complete Guide To Writing Cookbooks, Restaurant Reviews, Articles, Memoir, Fiction And More. From getting started and breaking in as a restaurant reviewer to writing recipes, cookbooks, and freelancing, Jacob covers all possible industry careers and writing avenues. Will Write For Food is a outstanding and practical guide for career-minded food fans and aspiring resturant critics. Will Write for Food is for food lovers who want to express themselves, guides food lovers from their earliest creative impulses to successful article writing, restaurant reviewing, and cookbook writing. Dianne Jacob - journalist and food-writing instructor and coach - offers interviews with award-winning writers such as Jeffrey Steingarten, Calvin Trillin, Molly O’Neill, and Deborah Madison, plus well-known book and magazine editors and literary agents, give readers the tools to get started and the confidence to follow through. Comprehensive yet accessible chapters range from restaurant reviewing to cookbooks to memoirs. Focused exercises at the end of chapters stimulate creativity, help organize thought, and build practical skills. Will Write for Food is the first and ultimate ins and outs guidebook to the incredibly popular world of food writing.

Marlowe & Company, Spring 2005, ISBN 1-56924-377-8, 352pp

Marlowe & Company http://www.marlowepub.com/

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Bean There, Done That, Took the Picture

What started with a can of black beans and a playful prank between two close friends, has grown into a small movement with a cult following and its very own website. "Beans Around The World" is a modern phenomenon that follows a free-spirited can of frijoles on its many adventures all around the world. Only on the Internet can you find a simple can of S & W Black Beans that has traveled all across the United States, as well as on cruise ships and half-way around the world to China (there is even a photo of it by The Great Wall!). Browse through this eccentric site and find out more about this glorious can of beans, as well as how you can participate in the fun "bean" phenomenon.

Beans Around The World http://www.beans-around-the-world.com