5@5 - Think outside the pint glass with hard cider
November 1st, 2011
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.

This time of year, it’s cider that’s the apple of our eye. And we're not talking about the weak (apple)sauce that is sparkling cider - we're talking the hard stuff, sometimes referred to as "apple wine."

But hard cider isn't just for sipping says Wes Mickel, owner and winemaker of Argus Cidery in Austin, Texas; it's high time we tapped the potential.

Five Things to Do With Hard Cider Beyond Drinking It: Wes Mickel

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Filed under: 5@5 • Sip • Think

Embracing Thanksgiving chaos and making excellent dairy-free mashed potatoes
November 1st, 2011
03:15 PM ET
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Something is going to go amiss this Thanksgiving. A side dish will burn, you'll be short a chair for an unannounced guest, your aunt will question all of your life choices in front of an assembly of your loved ones; it could be one of a million little (or large) mishaps. The world will not screech to a to a gravy-spattering halt. We promise.

Over the next few weeks, we'll help you prepare and gird your loins as best we can, with our own time-tested hosting tips and recipes, as well as plenty from chefs, hospitality experts, celebrities, hosts and home cooks we love. Our goal – sending you into Thanksgiving with a confident smile on your face, and seeing you emerge on the other side with your sanity intact.

Box lunch: Pizza wars and meat vending machines
November 1st, 2011
12:00 PM ET
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Sink your teeth into today's top stories from around the globe.

  • When competition goes a little too far: Two Domino's managers set fire to a Papa John's down the street. - The Florida Times Union

  • Why your wine stinks. - Eater

  • A gentlemen's rant take on Starbucks, including this gem: "You have a teardrop tattoo on your face. Why are you ordering a caramel frappe with extra whipped cream?" - YouTube

  • There is now a vending machine that dispenses meat. You're welcome. - al.com
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Filed under: Box Lunch • News

Peanut butter prices go nuts after bad harvest
November 1st, 2011
09:15 AM ET
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Trick-or-treaters might want to hold on to those Reese's Cups this Halloween as sharp increases in peanut butter prices have begun going into effect following one of the worst peanut harvests in decades.

Kraft raised prices for its Planters brand peanut butter by 40% starting Monday, while ConAgra has instituted increases of more than 20% for its Peter Pan brand that went into effect last month.

J.M. Smucker, which makes Jif, will introduce price hikes of around 30% starting Tuesday.

Consumers, meanwhile, are already seeing these increases reflected at grocery stores.

Read Peanut butter prices skyrocketing and PB&J and Me

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