5@5 - Italian-inspired March Madness munchies
March 26th, 2012
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.

Over the weekend, Kentucky became the only number one seed to make it to this year's Final Four. While the Wildcats celebrate their Big Dance victories alongside Louisville, Ohio State and Kansas, most of us are crying over our busted brackets.

Eat your March Madness emotions through the rest of the tournament - Italian-style - with chef Doug Psaltis, Executive Chef of RPM Italian in Chicago, Illinois.

Five Cicchetti (Italian snacks) to Munch on During March Madness: Doug Psaltis
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Filed under: 5@5 • Bite • Cuisines • Italian • Make • Recipes • Think


March 26th, 2012
01:00 PM ET
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iReporter kdelizzle says she created a Hunger Games inspired cake for the bakery she works for in Florida. After she created the cake, which took her approximately five hours, she handed out samples at the midnight showing of “The Hunger Games” last Thursday, and says people really enjoyed it.

As for "The Hunger Games" movie, kdelizzle says she was blown away by the movie, and thought it really translated well from the books. Although she loved everything about the movie, she says she did find one particular highlight in the film, "I think Peeta was my favorite my character because he is a baker too," she says.

More from iReport at the movies: 'The Hunger Games' has arrived!

Previously - 'The Hunger Games' bucks hunter stereotypes and Life-sized Stormtrooper cake takes eaters to the delicious side

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Filed under: iReport • Movies


Box lunch: Tomato pickers and a 'black and bleu' controversy
March 26th, 2012
12:00 PM ET
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Sink your teeth into today's top stories from around the globe.

  • "Can you imagine walking 100 feet with the bucket, which weighs 32 pounds, full of tomatoes when the temperature is 105 to 108 degrees?" A look at the tough conditions in which tomatoes are picked. - Perennial Plate


  • A look at the new breed of restaurant-goer, also known as "young people spending 25% of their paychecks on pickled lamb’s tongues." - New York Magazine



  • John Nicholson was overweight and ill ... until he started eating meat. - Daily Mail


  • Ready for summer? Try a tiki-licious Painkiller for good measure. - Globe & Mail
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Filed under: Box Lunch • News


Frank talk: Pairing wine with hot dogs
March 26th, 2012
10:30 AM ET
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Ray Isle (@islewine on Twitter) is Food & Wine's executive wine editor. We trust his every cork pop and decant – and the man can sniff out a bargain to boot. Take it away, Ray.

There are some folks who might think it a bit much, pairing wine with hot dogs - but think about it. What is a hot dog, after all, but a subspecies of sausage? And sausages, in all their varied everything-but-the-squeal wonderfulness, go great with wine.

Of course, as with all proteins, what you slather on the meat itself makes a big difference when it comes to what wine you might want to drink with it. And hot dog toppings definitely have their partisans: the kraut-and-mustard fan will look with scorn upon the Chicago-dog aficionado; the chili-cheese-and-jalapeño lover will consider the Coney Island dog adherent (chili, chopped onion, yellow mustard) a tiny-brained nit who ought to be living on a barge; and no one has any respect for the corn dog eaters, despite the fact that the corn dog is one of the genius inventions of the 20th century. (Like many genius inventions, it’s of disputed origin: Some claim the Krusty Korn Dog baking machine in the 1920s as the Ur-source, others say the corn dog originated at Pronto Pup in Portland, Oregon, in the 1930s, and still others argue for the Texas State Fair in 1938, where it was called a “corny dog.” Anyway, we’ll be announcing the date for the cage fight soon.)
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Filed under: Bite • Dishes • Hot dogs • Sip • Wine


National spinach day
March 26th, 2012
09:00 AM ET
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While you're frying up some eggs and bacon, we're cooking up something else: a way to celebrate today's food holiday.

Celebrate your inner Popeye and pop open some spinach - March 26 is National Spinach Day!

Not only is spinach crazy good for you, but there are a multitude of delicious ways to enjoy this leafy green. See how many you can try today, and you'll be feeling as healthy and buff as the famous sailorman.

Spinach originated in ancient Persia, eventually making its way to Italy in 827 and finally gracing European tables in the 1300s. Its appearance in early spring made this a fast favorite when other vegetables were scarce during Lenten diets. For this reason, spinach has the great honor of being mentioned in the first known English cookbook.
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March 26th, 2012
08:45 AM ET
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For the record, Eatocracy is partial to Montreal bagels, but is more than delighted with various local New York City options. Every last one of which trumps bagged.

Previously - Bagels, water and an urban legend and Schmeary-eyed fans mourn closing of iconic NYC bagel shop



Coffee klatsch
March 26th, 2012
05:00 AM ET
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Pssst! Got a sec to chat?

We are utterly thrilled when readers want to hang out and talk – whether it's amongst themselves or in response to pieces we've posted. We want Eatocracy to be a cozy, spirited online home for those who find their way here.

Consider the daily Coffee Klatsch post as your VIP lounge – the primary comments thread for readers who'd like to chat about topics not related to the articles we're running. That way, everyone knows where to find each other, and each post's comments section remains on topic.

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Filed under: Buzz • Coffee Klatsch


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