September 16th, 2010
08:30 PM ET
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As it happens, we were at that second party along with Gail and can attest that 1. she is that luminous in person, 2. Ed is infinitely less moist than he appears on camera and 3. with some effort, and dedication one can fit a truly stunning quantity of duck gizzards and mini panna cottas down one's gullet.

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Filed under: Gail Simmons • Television • Top Chef


5@5 - Food editor and author J.M. Hirsch
September 16th, 2010
05:00 PM ET
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5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.

J.M. Hirsch is the cookbook author of a "High Flavor, Low Labor: Reinventing Weeknight Cooking." He is also the national food editor for The Associated Press.

In the spirit of that same "high flavor" approach, he's here to promote those fairly commonplace ingredients to their full culinary potential. Time to give your pantry the old razzle dazzle.

Five Uncommon Uses for the Most Common Pantry Ingredients: J.M. Hirsch
FULL POST

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Filed under: 5@5 • Think


September 16th, 2010
03:45 PM ET
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What does IHOP mean to you: pancakes or prayer?

Get more on the LAWSUIT

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Filed under: Think • Video


The math behind 96 billion burger choices
September 16th, 2010
02:45 PM ET
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Today, CNN Money's Laurie Segall reports on 4food, a new New York City restaurant that's fueling its customer base with the use of social media. The restaurateurs claim to offer 96 billion burger combos available as orders. Stacy Cowley crunches the numbers.

New Manhattan burger joint 4food lets eaters customize their creations with an extensive ingredient menu, and news reports have put the range of options at anywhere from "more than a million" to "140 million" burger combinations.

"There can't possibly be 140 million combinations," I said to my statistician spouse.

"Let's find out," he said, firing up Excel.
FULL POST

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Filed under: Bite • Casual • Restaurants


Blogger Spotlight: Ezra Pound Cake
September 16th, 2010
02:30 PM ET
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Every so often, we're highlighting a local or regional blogger we think you ought to know about. We can’t be everywhere at once, so we look to these passionate eaters, cooks and writers to keep us tapped into every facet of the food world. Consider this a way to get to know a blog’s taste buds, because, well, you should.

Who: Rebecca Crump, of Ezra Pound Cake
Where: Nashville, Tennessee
Twitter: @ezrapoundcake
FULL POST

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Filed under: Blog Spotlight • Blogs • Think


Lunchtime poll – kid lunches
September 16th, 2010
12:46 PM ET
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We just filmed a Your Bottom Line segment on healthier packed lunches for kids - whole grain pitas, kale chips, all that yummy stuff. Of course we had to have some "bad" food on hand for contrast, and as per our usual, we put the food from the shoot on the giveaway table in the 5th floor newsroom.

It took approximately .0003 seconds for the Lunchables to disappear, and perhaps a millisecond longer for the Chef Boyardee lasagna in a cup. There was no pretense of "this is for my kid." Nope - our grown-up colleagues are gonna be snacking on Capri Sun pouches and shelf-stable nachos with nearly 900mg of sodium today. We were semi-tempted to join in, did we not have to save professional face.

Watch Eatocracy on Your Bottom Line 9/18 at 9:30 a.m. ET

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Filed under: Buzz • Lunchtime Poll


Box lunch
September 16th, 2010
12:00 PM ET
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Sink your teeth into today's top stories from around the globe.

  • Make a mean potluck dish? It could be featured in The New York Times Magazine. Ladies and gents, start your ovens. - Food 52


  • The good news is the number of hungry dropped below 1 billion. The bad news is that number is still "unacceptable" by U.N. standards. - The Atlantic


  • Meet Ingimundur and Ulla Kjarval of Spring Lake Farms. Pasture-raised animals is the name of their game. - food. curated.


  • The real top chefs of the past 15 years. - Epicurious


  • Is the fetishization of food ruining your favorite hidden eats?– The Awl
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Filed under: Box Lunch • News


September 16th, 2010
11:45 AM ET
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(EW.com) - Well, "Top Chef" fans, we've finally reached the end of another season. I know many of you have bemoaned how much the last 13 weeks dragged on, but on some levels, it flew by for me. Without a deep connection to the cheftestants, and with Tiffany (AKA the only hope for a happy ending) booted just before the finale, I was freed up from the usual anxiety that comes from having a strong rooting interest. Stir in a plethora of unanswered questions (mail-order bride or not?), and I found there was even less reason to emotionally invest.

But, hey, just because the menu might not have your favorite dish doesn't mean you don't eat, right? So let's dig in.

CNN Entertainment has all the spoilers you can eat. COME 'N GET IT

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Filed under: Television • Top Chef


Scientists find golden ticket in cacao genome
September 16th, 2010
10:00 AM ET
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Mars Inc. - maker of M&M's, Snickers and Twix - and its research partners Wednesday released a preliminary genome sequence for cacao, the tree that ultimately brings us chocolate.

Having such a tool will lead to more disease-resistant trees, bigger and better cocoa bean yields and a better life for 6.5 million farmers, most them in West Africa, researchers said.

The news also could be sweet for U.S. consumers, who sustain the $17 billion chocolate industry. Chocolate consumption is growing by 2 percent a year, and companies and researchers want to make sure the cocoa bean supply meets the demand.

Phil Gast over at CNN Living has the FULL STORY

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Filed under: Business and Farming News • Chocolate • News


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