The stunningly cold weather in the Midwest and the Northeast has gotten plenty of press this winter. But the longer-term news story is the severe drought affecting the western half of the country.
It’s especially brutal in California — which, given that state’s diverse and intensive farming economy, is bad news not just for eaters in the U.S. but worldwide. Since California farmers rely on irrigation, farmers are currently postponing or canceling their early-spring crops. And ranchers are selling off their cattle, since the state’s grasslands have already gone brown.
You might remember The Star Wars Cookbook, a gag gift from 1998 that featured hilarious dioramas of vintage “Star Wars” action figures arranged in landscapes of, say, cinnamon rolls (with Princess Leia and her matching hairstyle, natch).
Now National Public Radio has discovered a similar art project out of Paris, in which two photographers (Pierre Javelle and Akiko Ida) arrange tiny figurines within a world of gigantic food. There are firefighters dousing a fire of hot chile peppers, polar bears waterskiing between marshmallow icebergs, and an earnest team of construction workers plumping dried raisins back into lush grapes.
Bonus: a video titled “The Ballad of Minimiam in the Land of Milk.”
Plenty of folks like to spend Christmas Eve giving back instead of shopping. They volunteer at soup kitchens or homeless shelters or food banks. If you’re among this crowd, here’s a quick list of 10 things food banks really want. Hint: It’s not another bag full of canned beans.
Rather, it’s things like spices and chocolate — items that really help in the kitchen, but which you might not think to donate. And, of course, it’s non-food items, such as diapers, feminine products, and socks.
Nothing like a warm pair of socks for spreading some holiday cheer.
An American native
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The vegetarian-cooking pioneer
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