Kids Book Review: Apple Pie Fourth of July

This book is written by Janet Wong. Review from School Library Journal: Kindergarten-Grade 2-This simply told story explores a child’s fears about cultural differences and fitting in with understanding and affection. A Chinese-American girl helps her parents open their small neighborhood grocery store every day of the year. However, today is the Fourth of July and her parents just don’t understand that customers won’t be ordering chow mein and sweet-and-sour pork on this very American holiday.  READ MORE

Know Your Cooking Oils

Coconut oil is an edible oil extracted from the kernel or meat of matured coconuts harvested from the coconut palm (Cocos nucifera).

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Throughout the tropical world, it has provided the primary source of fat in the diets of millions of people for generations. It has various applications in food, medicine, and industry. Coconut oil is very heat-stable, which makes it suited to methods of cooking at high temperatures like frying


Canola is one of the most common cooking oils and wins in the category of best all-around oil to use for baking a cake. It combines ease of use, wide availability and health benefits with a relatively low expense.

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Grape seed oil (also called grapeseed oil or grape oil) is pressed from the seeds of grapes, and is thus an abundant by-productof winemaking. Because the saturated fat in hard fats like butter, shortening and lard are harmful to your health, you may want to use oil in your baked goods instead. Grape oil is low in saturated fat and has a light color and flavor that won’t conflict with the other flavors in your cake.

Other cooking oils for high temperature cooking and can be safely used to cook at moderate temperatures during stir-frying,sautéing, or deep-frying. Due to its clean, light taste, and high polyunsaturated fat content, it is also used as an ingredient in salad dressings and mayonnaise and as a base for oil infusions of garlicrosemary, or other herbs or spices. It also is sprayed on raisinsto help them retain their flavor.


Olive oil is a fat obtained from the olive (the fruit of Olea europaea; family Oleaceae), a traditional tree crop of the Mediterranean Basin. The oil is produced by grinding whole olives and extracting the oil by mechanical or chemical means. It is commonly used incookingcosmeticspharmaceuticals, and soaps and as a fuel for traditional oil lamps. Olive oil is used throughout the world, but especially in the Mediterranean countries.

Tips from Chef Mimi of Chef mimi of the first culinary competition feature black chefs “Bringing It To The Table”  on Olive Oil useI love to cook with olive oil.. i use a mister, i pour the olive oil in a stainless steel mister and this helps me properly coat my pans save oil and lessen unnessasary calories. When making stir fry i first turn the heat to med high, right befor adding veggies i coat pan so it wont burn fast since u dont need much. Toss veggies, add seasalt and its done! Olive oil is a great mono saturated health cooking oli and it can add great flavor to any dish. From my table to yours chef mimi!

Chef Marta of the Havana Road Cafe. Goya Spanish extra virgin olive oil. It is sweet, A silky smooth texture.

Peanut oil, in Britain usually known as groundnut oil, is a mild tasting vegetable oil derived from peanuts. The oil is available in refined, unrefined, cold pressed, and roasted varieties, the latter with a strong peanut flavor and aroma, analogous to toasted sesame oil.

It is often used in ChineseSouth Asian and Southeast Asian cuisine, both for general cooking, and in the case of roasted oil, for added flavor. Peanut oil has a high smoke point relative to many other cooking oils, so is commonly used for frying foods.

Red palm oil gets its name from its characteristic dark red color, which comes from carotenes, such as alpha-carotenebeta-carotene and lycopene, the same nutrients that give tomatoes, carrots and other fruits and vegetables their rich colors.

While red palm oil has been used in food preparation for thousands of years in the east, only recently have scientist began to explore the hidden health benefits of the oil. As science continues to research the properties, red palm oil is becoming more readily available in the west.  Today it is available in some up-scale supermarkets and health stores.

Red palm oil contains alpha and beta-carotene, lycopene, vitamin-e and several other vital carotenoids. In fact, the vitamin E found within red palm oil is a unique form of vitamin E that is considered especially beneficially to humans.  Studies at the Universities of Wisconsin and Louisiana have revealed several key benefits.  READ MORE

Truffle oil is a modern culinary ingredient, used to impart the flavor and aroma of truffles to a dish. Most truffle oils are not made from actual truffles, but are a synthetic product that combines a thioether (2,4-dithiapentane), one of numerous organic aromas or odorants found in real truffles, with an olive oil or grapeseed oil base.  As with pure olive oils, these range from clear to cloudy, and yellow to green.

Truffle oil is commonly used to make “truffle fries,” which feature French fries tossed in truffle oil, Parmesan cheese, pepper, and sometimes other ingredients. Some pasta dishes and whipped dishes such as mashed potatoes or deviled eggs incorporate truffle oil.

Comment from Chef Marta of Havanna Road Cafe, Towson Maryland– Truffle Oil adds that earthiness to any sauce.

Using The Term “Oriental’

An Article From I was a student in Asian-American studies, one of the first concepts instilled in us was that “oriental” is a bad word. Here in the U.S., the term — which has historically been used to encompass those of Asian descent — is now politically incorrect. Nowadays, referring to a person as “oriental” might instantly offend them and trigger the retort, “I AM NOT A RUG!” I’ve acquired a disdain for the word myself, which has sparked heated debate with Asians and non-Asians alike — and inspired various identity crises when choosing among instant noodle brands.

But maybe there’s a case to be made for using the term. After all, making a word like “oriental” taboo leaves people confused and dispersed among the plethora of acronym-happy identifiers (Asian-American, Asian Pacific American, Asian Pacific Islander American, etc). And though vacuuming many diverse cultures into a single term undoubtedly ends up understating the individuality of each, when it comes to coalition building, might “oriental” be the most accurate and efficient term? READ MORE

NBA Winning Coach: The Multi Cultural Erik Spoelstra

Erik Spoelstra is an NBA coach who was born to a father of Dutch and Irish descent and a Filipino mother named Elisa Celino.  Erik Spoelstra (born November 1, 1970) is an American professional basketball coach and the current head coach of theNational Basketball Association‘s Miami Heat. He is the first Filipino-American head coach in the NBA, as well as the first Filipino-American head coach of any North American professional sports team.  He is also the first Asian-American head coach in the history of the four major American sports leagues.

He is the son of DutchIrish-American Jon Spoelstra, who was an NBA executive for the Portland Trail BlazersDenver Nuggets,Buffalo Braves and New Jersey Nets,[4] and the grandson of the late Watson Spoelstra, a sportswriter in the Detroit area.

Health Benefits of Lychee

Lychee is a medium-sized evergreen tree, reaching 10–20 m tall, bearing many small fleshy fruits that are up to 5 cm (2.0 in) long and 4 cm (1.6 in) wide. The outside of the fruit is covered by a pink-red, roughly-textured rind that is inedible but easily removed to expose a layer of sweet, translucent white flesh. Lychees are eaten in many different dessert dishes, and are especially popular in China, throughout South-East Asia, along with India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan.

Nutrional Benefits:

* Lychee helps in increasing the energy of the body.
* It increases fluids in the body, which are required for good health.
* It enhances the feeling of well being.

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Review of American Grown by Michelle Obama

New York Times-Every so often, a flash of Michelle Obama’s humor comes through in her otherwise serious book about the White House garden and her campaign against childhood obesity, “American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America,”


Heavy Seas Alehouse Guest Chef Dinner

Mark your calendars! On Wednesday, June 27, 2012, The Heavy Seas Alehouse of Baltimore, Maryland plans to host a fundraising Guest Chef Dinner.

Starting at 6pm, the event boasts 4 chefs, 1 mixologist, 4 courses, and 12 beverages. Guests include visitors from the Birch & Barley, Chazz: A Bronx Original, Wit and Wisdom and the B & O American Brasserie.

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Honey Melon Cucumber Iced Tea


Lipton tea and several Coffee house have put a spin on a classic favorite of Iced tea by thinly slicing cucumbers and adding a few other ingredients to the mix.


  • 4 cups water
  • 2 Lipton® Iced Tea Brew Family Size Tea Bags
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 small cucumber (about 6 inches), thinly sliced
  • 2 cups thinly sliced cantaloupe
  • 2 cups thinly sliced honeydew melon


Click to See Directions