On Tuesday, the Senate voted in favor of the long-stalled Food Safety Modernization Act. While a final vote date hasn’t yet been set, President Obama hopes a House vote will go through with similar gusto, saying "We are one step closer to having critically important new tools to protect our nation's food supply and keep consumers safe."
The bill, which represents the most sweeping overhaul of the food safety system since 1938, allows for greater governmental regulation of the U.S. food system - currently in the national spotlight for numerous egg and produce recalls that have kept Americans in fear of their breakfast since this past August.
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.
At sundown, Hanukkah, the eight-day festival of lights, officially began. Over the next seven days, Jewish families will commemorate the holiday by feasting on the likes of latkes and sufganiyot (or jelly doughnuts), among other dishes. And over the next month, up until New Year's, friends and families everywhere will be gathering around the table to stuff themselves silly to celebrate the season.
But before you invite the whole lot of 'em over, a few dinner party ground rules from a man who knows a thing or two about throwing a party with style and grace.
Isaac Mizrahi is the internationally acclaimed fashion designer and co-host of Bravo's "The Fashion Show: Ultimate Collection," which airs every Tuesday at 10 p.m. EST. He also hosts his own daily web series "WATCH ISAAC" where you might find him cooking up halibut avec Eric Ripert, waxing rhapsodic about his new favorite restaurant or the perfect pie crust.
Five Rules on Having a Good Dinner Party: Isaac Mizrahi
Amman, Jordan (CNN) - It's not the sheep he uses to keep his grape vines tidy that make Omar Zumot's wines unusual. Nor is it the fish he uses as a source of fertilizer.
What truly sets Zumot's wines apart is the fact that they come not from the lush vineyards typically found in France or California, but from the hot and arid plains of Jordan.
"My father was a vintner since 1954, and it has always been his dream and our dream to produce a good wine of Jordan," Zumot told CNN.
"You know when I was four years of age, he would always tell me this country can produce the best wine in the world."
The tree is trimmed. The halls are decked. The gifts are wrapped. The list has been checked - twice, even.
Then you remember Matt at the local watering hole, who knows how to make a gimlet sing. And master oyster shucker Carl at the neighborhood fish counter, who has saved your digits from meeting their gruesome death time and time again.
OH, and what about the maître d' at that little Italian joint you love, who always seems to find a table for you on a full night? And crap, the smiley barista that has your 160-degree skim, no whip, decaf mocha awaiting every morning at 7:45 on the dot.
Figuring out how much to tip and who to tip during the holidays can be as stressful as dealing with the in-laws. Here's a few tips of our own (Editor's Note: Granted, we live in New York, which just happens to be one of the tip-happiest places in the world. Not how you tip in your neck of the woods? Let us know in the comments.):
Wait – so we can have our tasty turkey AND fuel up the truck? We're in like deep-fried skin.
Previously – Deep-fried indoor turkey – for science
Previously: Butter. Butter butter butter butter. Butter.
While you're frying up some eggs and bacon, we're cooking up something else: a way to celebrate today's food holiday and the most delicious finds on TV.
Ah, fruitcake - the ugly stepsister of the holiday dessert realm. Well, move over Cinderella because December is National Fruitcake Month.
Despite its lousy reputation, when done right, fruitcakes take the best candied fruit, nuts and spices and bake them into a delectable slab. Soaking the cake in alcohol helps preserve it for years, or even centuries.
Bake one now and it should last you at least until New Year’s 2021 (That is, unless the Mayans were right). It's the gift that keeps on giving.
What's on TV?
The rest of the day is gonna be all S.510 and policy wonkery, so we're taking our giggles where we can get 'em.
But seriously - it makes us super-cranky when someone tries to shrink our sausage.*
*(Warning – strong language from a seriously cheesed-off sausage eater)
Today from the FDA: