Roast Curry Hard Apple Cider Beer & Cabbage

Do you know the difference between hard cider and apple cider beer? The public relation’s representative for Angry Orchard gently reminded me when a recipe for Angry Orchard Summer Ale Hard Cider Beer Shrimp Boil was published last summer. Oh… well that was quite an error on my behalf. But, I did notice a few friends mention how they love “…Angry Orchard’s Apple Cider Beer…” Wait… Am I the only one who mistakenly thought it’s the same product with various names or brands? According to Time Magazine, the production of American hard cider more than tripled from 2011 to 2013, from 9.4 million gallons to 32 million gallons. Which means, there could be quite a few people who are confused about the difference. If we’re part of a growing trend of increasingly purchasing hard ciders, perhaps we should learn more about it.The Angry Orchard’s public relation’s representative accepted my request to interview Ryan Burk, Angry Orchard’s Head Cider Maker. Cheers to learning about hard cider in the interview, and towards the end, get a recipe for Roast Curry Hard Cider Chicken and Cabbage.

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Dried Corn, this variety grown for feed, leftover on one of Spirit Farms fields
Dried Corn, this variety grown for feed, leftover on one of Spirit Farms fields.

During my mid-twenties, I stopped drinking and eating dairy products. My circle of friends declared it evil. We thought it had too much hormones and antibiotics. Furthermore, so-called health experts said dairy products were bad for people of color, because milk wasn’t consumed in Africa. It wasn’t until a trip to Europe changed my views about dairy products. After all, who can resist European cheese, yogurt and butter? The day my dietary restrictions were thrown away, was the moment I was guiltily eating fresh baked bread from a danish bakery. It was a moment when a soothing thought crossed my mind, “Please eat everything. When is the next time I will visit Europe, again?” My guilt disappeared, as I feasted on European dairy products to discover I didn’t have a milk allergy. The irony? During the summer of my European feast, I lost weight. And, I fell in love with dairy-based ice cream.  Read more

Dairy Question Image

Did you read my story about the pros and cons of GMOs, which also features a recipe for a Strawberry Pecan Galette? The next story with BestFoodFacts.org features an interview with a dairy expert. Since traveling to California and Arkansas, I had the opportunity to learn about the science of food. The experience of visiting a dairy farm and talking to farmers were full of “ah-ha moments.” Part of the sponsorship agreement with BestFoodFacts.org is to do an interview based on any of the topics covered during the trips. Dairy Milk is my chosen topic.

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Appetizing Thoughts: The Now and Future of First Fresh Olive Oil

Saffron Olive Oil Cookies with Blood Orange Glaze

In 2011, Bill Sanders of First Fresh Olive Oil was interviewed, in which he demystified olive oil and promoted the launch of a kickstarter campaign raising money to start a private label selling quality olive oil in the United States at competitive prices. Since successfully raising the funds, he has garnered two outstanding industry recognized awards, crossed the country to introduce his peppery tasting olive oil by offering tastings and learned a few start-up marketing lessons. In this follow up interview, he explains his future goals, inspiration from a recent Sicilian trip for First Fresh Olive Oil and why using olive oil in desserts is better, especially for the recipe—Saffron Olive Oil Cookies with Blood Orange Glaze —at the end of the interview. 
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Appetizing Thoughts: Demystifying Olive Oil

Olives growing on a tree.

We’re curious and thirsty for olive oil. Thirsty not just for using it in our favorite recipes, but learning more about it. Bill Sanders, an olive oil evangelist at Crush+Press, initially appears to have successfully reached his goal on Kickstarter to start a private label selling quality olive oil in the United States at competitive prices. However, the amount raised is based on a shoestring budget. Ideally, he needs to raise a total of $25-30k. In the following interview, Sanders demystifies olive oil and explains his quest for offering authentic olive oil at affordable prices. Read more