September 20th, 2011
08:00 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.

Gather around the punch bowl, a different kind of water cooler– September 20 is National Punch Day!

You can skip straight to the punchline today. Whether you like it spiked or as innocent as a high school homecoming, punch has been a catch-all beverage since the 1600s.

Originally, punch, known as "panch" in Hindi, "panj" in Persian or "panchan" in Sanskrit (all words meaning "five"), was made with alcohol, sugar, lemon juice, water and tea or spices. The British developed their popular Wassail, created around a wine or brandy base, but once Jamaican rum dropped on the scene circa 1655, modern punch was born. Naturally, today is also National Rum Punch Day.

Fruit punch was developed by soft drink manufacturers, although it doesn't have much to do with fruit in the first place. Different regions and cultures are famous for their own takes on punch, so try one of these 600 or one of the dozen vintage recipe in the gallery above.

We dare you to attempt Chatham Artillery Punch. According to Joe Odom, it's "seven parts liquor, three parts juice, whatever you have on hand on both counts." Drink up, and try to remember us in the morning.

Click through for 12 vintage punch recipes

March 7th, 2011
05:45 PM ET
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For the past 25 years, the International Association of Culinary Professionals has celebrated excellence in the field of culinary publishing with the IACP Cookbook Awards. Behold the finalists for the 2011 honors.

2011 Cookbook Award Finalists


"The Lee Bros. Simple Fresh Southern"
Author(s): Matt Lee, Ted Lee
Editor: Rica Allanic
Publisher: Random House, Inc.

"The Winemaker Cooks"
Author(s): Christine Hanna
Editor: Bill LeBlond, Sarah Billingsley
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Photographer: Sheri Giblin

"Fried Chicken & Champagne: A Romp Through the Kitchen at Pomegranate Bistro"
Author(s): Lisa Dupar
Editor: Miriam Bulmer
Publisher: Southern Accents, Inc.
Photographer: Kathryn Barnard
Stylist: Alicia Nammacher


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Filed under: Books • Booze Books • Think

Breakfast buffet
January 17th, 2011
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 and the most delicious finds on TV.

The December holidays are behind us, but so long as temperatures are dipping into single digits anywhere in the US, we're happy to keep taking our tipples on the warmed-up side. January 17 is National Hot Buttered Rum Day, and we humbly suggest celebrating with the recipe above, scanned from our 1941 edition of W.C. Whitfield's drink mixing masterpiece 'Here's How'.

Not in a rum state of mind, but still hot 'n' bothered over the notion of a steamy beverage? Pop some butter in your whiskey toddy. We surely won't tell.

What's on TV?

July 29th, 2010
03:30 PM ET
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I don't have family recipes - at least on my side of the marriage. More on that at another time, but most of my culinary heritage is stitched together from books that somehow made their way onto my shelves and into my psyche.

Here are a few that changed the way I eat, drink and think, forever.

1. An Invitation to Indian Cooking – Madhur Jaffrey
Vintage (1973)
When Dorothy cracked open the door of her tornado-tossed Kansas farmhouse and stepped from staid black and white into lilting, lively, color-popped Oz, it must have something akin to how I felt when my Dad suddenly started cooking from this book.


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Filed under: Books • Booze Books • Cookbook Reviews • Cookbooks • List • Sip • Think

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