January 31st, 2014
08:00 PM ET
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Editor's note: Cindy Y. Rodriguez is CNN's editor for Latino audiences. February 24 is National Tortilla Chip Day.

As a non-sports aficionado, my attraction to game day festivities has been solely food focused. So naturally, I noticed how potato chips have taken less and less space on the snack table to make room for tortilla chips and guacamole.

Although potato chips continue to be the top-selling salted snack in terms of pounds sold, tortilla chips have been increasing in sales at a faster pace than potato chips, especially during this time of year, according to Tom Dempsey, CEO of the Snack Food Association.

And, it's not just tortilla chips selling at such high rates either.

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Filed under: History • Junk • Mexican • Mexico • Super Bowl • Tailgating


January 30th, 2014
12:30 AM ET
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One reason Sicilians tend to identify with Sicily first and Italy (a distant) second?

Sicilian food.

The same goes for Veneto in the north or Puglia in the south.

Italy is a young country - it only celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2011.

Despite the successful export of the "Italian restaurant," the idea of a unified Italian cuisine is something many Italians reject.

Instead there are regional dishes, sometimes with tastes as different as you'd find between countries.
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Filed under: Italian • Italy


January 27th, 2014
02:30 PM ET
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The first time the South Korean factory owner watched his North Korean employees nibble on a Choco Pie, they appeared shocked - even overwhelmed.

He summed up their reaction to the South Korean snack in one word: "Ecstasy."

Much like what Twinkies are to Americans, South Korea's Choco Pies - two disc-shaped, chocolate-covered cakes, sandwiching a rubbery layer of marshmallow cream - are ubiquitous, cost less than 50 cents and are full of empty calories.

But on the other side of the Korean border, the snacks are viewed as exotic, highly prized treats, selling on North Korea's black markets for as much as $10, according to analysts. Their rising popularity in the north reveals an unexpected common ground between the two Koreas, despite their fractious relationship - a shared sweet tooth.
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January 17th, 2014
10:00 AM ET
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Michelin-starred chef Marcus Wareing says his customers are no longer interested in stiff French service. He's opting for a warmer, American model of hospitality, and his staff of being retrained to offer hospitality with a smile and read the guests.
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Filed under: Fine Dining • France • Restaurant News • Restaurants • Service


NYC mayor's pizza technique is a big forking deal for charity
January 16th, 2014
11:15 AM ET
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Mayor Bill de Blasio bit into some unexpected publicity recently when he was photographed politely eating pizza - with a knife and fork.

At a Staten Island pizzeria, no less.

Now, the act that sent the Internet into a frenzy with chatter about what most New Yorkers scorn as a serious food flub portends to deliver some dough - as in money - to charity.

Goodfella's Pizzeria co-owner Marc Cosentino says he will auction off the infamous fork that de Blasio used in a charity fundraiser.
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Filed under: Charity • New York • Pizza


Asking for a friend: Which country has the best food?
January 15th, 2014
11:45 AM ET
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Editor's note: Our pals at CNN Travel take a great global view on food culture. They'd like for you to weigh in with your favorites.

We love to write about food. We love to celebrate the good stuff and lambaste the bad.

But there's a debate we've avoided, if only to save computer screens the world over from the liters of spittle that will fly from the mouths of irate readers as they vent incredulously about our "ignorant, biased, un-researched and unreasoned" choices.

Which is why, having taken the plunge, we want to turn this particular piece over to you, and ask: which country has the best food?
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Filed under: Lunchtime Poll • Travel


December 18th, 2013
02:15 PM ET
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Editor's Note: Josh Ruxin is the director of Health Builders, the author of "A Thousand Hills to Heaven" and can frequently be found tweaking recipes and mixing drinks at Heaven Restaurant in Kigali, Rwanda.

After we were married eight years ago, I convinced my wife, Alissa, to leave New York City to move with me to Rwanda.

We both had always wanted to have some impact on health and poverty somewhere on the African continent, and Rwanda was easily our first pick. I had worked in different capacities with the government since the late 1990s, and had been moved by the country's ambition to become the "Singapore of Africa.”

Although reminders of the 1994 genocide were fresh, the country was moving rapidly on its promise to build a new nation. Great public health projects were afoot, and the young president was romancing private investment from all over the world. My wife bravely took the plunge, sight unseen. She expected the worst.

What she saw amazed her: The country was, and is, remarkably clean and safe - well beyond what you would find in other nations on the continent. It was cleaner and safer, day and night, than you’ll find in many parts of New York City. There were no bribes to be paid, construction was happening at a staggering rate and the weather was like Southern California year-round. She set to work with orphans of the genocide, many of whom were in need of scholarships for university education.
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Filed under: Africa • Travel


Banker turns eyes toward the pie in Nairobi
December 18th, 2013
09:00 AM ET
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What would you do if you had to wait 90 minutes for your pizza to be delivered? Stare out the window with sad, hungry eyes? Call in screaming to cancel your order? Take to Twitter to vent your #waitingforever fury? Or take matters into your hands and launch your own pizza delivery store?

Ritesh Doshi, 32, did the latter.

Back in 2011, Doshi, an investment banker whose career had taken him to London, New York and Amman, returned to his native country Kenya to visit his parents. One night, he and his family decided to order out.

"We had to wait for about 90 minutes for the pizza to be delivered," remembers Doshi. "We then ordered again another night from another place and it took 75 minutes," he adds. "You just couldn't get a decent pizza in a reasonable amount of time. So I thought, you know what, anywhere in the world that I've lived and worked you can get a pizza in 35 minutes - so why not in Nairobi?"

Read Investment banker turned pizza maker 'gets Nairobi naked'



For the love of Macau's egg tarts
December 12th, 2013
10:45 AM ET
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There aren't many people who can claim that their lives have been changed by an egg tart, but chef Raymond Wong - who heads Macau’s Institute for Tourism Studies Educational Restaurant - says when he tasted Macau’s famous local Portuguese tarts there was no looking back.

“I left Hong Kong when I was just nine years old,” says Wong, who grew up in San Francisco and studied at the culinary program at San Francisco City College.

“But when I came back here in 2004, I went to Macau with my fiancé and she took me to a famous shop for egg tarts.”
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Filed under: Asian • China • Chinese • Obsessions


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