During World War One, Some New York Menus Carried a Food Conservation Message

Reducing food consumption on the homefront was a major initiative of the U.S. government during the First World War, even before U.S. troops were fighting “Over There.” The U.S. Food Administration (run by future president Herbert Hoover) spearheaded the effort with promotional posters, outreach to restaurants, public education efforts, encouragement of gardens, and more. Some […]

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Examining the hangover cure in the Western “El Dorado”: Was Asafoetida Known in the Old West?

For some forgotten reason, I recently watched the 1966 Western El Dorado. It’s one of the better Westerns I have seen, with more humor and a lot less racism than the typical Western (though there’s a short cringe-worthy stereotyping of Chinese near the end). The film has a top-notch cast and crew: the great Howard […]

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Garbage In, Garbage Out: Low Quality Feed Produces Low Quality Crickets

Crickets are a hot ingredient for some sustainability advocates and start-ups. In marketing materials and other articles, you’ll see claims about how these “mini-livestock” are a low-impact food with enormous potential: they can eat almost anything, they don’t need much land, and so on (you’ll find plenty of examples in my two round-ups about insects […]

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Container Shipping History in Charts

Updated below After my review of The Box and my port mapping exercise, I thought I’d sail back into port and unload a few port-related charts. The first shows the growth of three big West Coast ports: Los Angeles, Long Beach and Oakland. As international trade has expanded and the container shipping industry has become […]

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Two Small Rants about Book Design Flaws

As I work on a book review that will certainly take me a while, here’s a short rant about two elements of book design that can be irksome.  (For what it’s worth, the book I’m reviewing — The Box: How the Shipping Container Made the World Smaller and the World Economy Bigger, by Marc Levinson, […]

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Finding kale boring or uncool? Try the next big things: cauliflower leaves and broccoli leaves

Updated 8/23/15 Are you sick of seeing kale everywhere? Kale salad after kale salad. Kale green-smoothies. Kale chips. Dehydrated kale dust garnish. Or are you worried that kale’s recent entry on to some McDonald’s menus, will make it totally uncool? Broccoli leaves and cauliflower leaves could be the alternative you are looking for.  They are […]

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A War Bread in a Modern Cookbook: Oat Bread

As I mentioned in a previous post, I have been baking a “war bread” for quite a while.  My long-time favorite one-day bread is the oat bread in Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. The original recipe is simple, delicious and nutritious, being a single-day bread that is enriched with rolled oats and oat bran.  By […]

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