Today’s collection of news chum covers the food field, from the ground to the grocer, with the cleanup afterwards thrown in:
- A Pepper Up. Ever wonder how Szechuan Pepper works … that is, how does the spice create that tingling feeling. National Geographic has investigated, and has discovered pepper works by stimulating the same nerves that a light touch stimulates. Similarly, hot peppers stimulate the same nerves that burns effect. Ummm, cool.
- Seeing Red. You probably know that much of our red dye comes from crushed insects. Ever wonder what they look like? Here’s a picture. They are very tiny, but produce a safe red dye. The linked article also talks about how to make clothing dye from the bugs.
- Fresh and Easy. By now, you know that the Fresh and Easy chain is being bought by Ron Burkle’s Yucaipa Cos. This is great news, because all but 50 stores are staying open (we regularly shop at the one in Northridge). A list hasn’t been posted of the closing stores, but if your store is having a 25% off everything sale, that mean’s it is on the closing list.
- Origins in Store. This short article, and accompanying audio piece, explore the history of many of Southern California’s markets, including Ralphs, Von’s, and Trader Joe’s.
- Deli Food. Here’s a list that purports to be a guide to the Jewish Deli’s in Los Angeles. I wouldn’t believe it. It doesn’t have Brents at the top of the list. It fails to mention Weilers at all. It fails to mention the Jerry’s Famous chain, the new Uncle Bernies, or Morts in Tarzana. In short, except for Arts, it ignores the San Fernando Valley. Who knows what it omits on the West Side or elsewhere in Los Angeles.
- Cleaning Up. When you cook, you’ve got to clean up. Here’s a list of 32 things you should probably be cleaning, but likely aren’t. My favorite: putting vacuum cleaner filters and parts through the dishwasher.