Sunday, February 28, 2010

It's Raining Fish in Australia

Much of Australia has been battered by torrential rains, but a territory town has something else falling from the sky - fish.
This has happened not once, but twice, on Thursday and Friday afternoon.
Hundreds of small white fish were falling from the sky, they fell from the sky everywhere, and
the fish were alive when they hit the ground.
In 2004, locals reported fish falling from the sky, and in 1974, a similar incident captured international headlines.
The small white fish are believed to be spangled perch, which are very common through much of northern Australia.
Weather bureau senior forecaster Ashley Patterson said the geological conditions were perfect on Friday for a tornado in the Douglas Daly region.
He said it would have been an ideal weather situation to allow the phenomena to occur - but no tornadoes have been reported to the authority.
"It's a very unusual event," he said.
"With an updraft, (fish and water picked up) could get up high - up to 60,000 or 70,000 feet.
"Or possibly from a tornado over a large water body - but we haven't had any reports," he said.

Not sure if there is a connection, but here's an1555 engraving of raining fish.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Gordon Ramsay slices his finger on Ellen Degeneres

Chef Gordon Ramsay sliced off his nail during an appearance on Ellen Degeneres' talk show.
The odd thing here was, Gordon was showing Ellen how to use caution slicing vegetables.
When he lost focus, he cut himself, with blood dripping from the deep cut on his finger.
Laughing off the mishap, Ramsay said, "I wasn't concentrating. I haven't cut myself this big in 10 years! (I cut my finger) under the nail. I took the nail off."

Friday, February 26, 2010

Gatorade no longer interested in Tiger Woods

Gatorade ( PepsiCo) said Friday it is no longer interested in Tiger Woods, one week after the golf superstar apologized for his scandal.
"We no longer see a role for Tiger in our marketing efforts and have ended our relationship," a spokeswoman for Gatorade said in a statement.
She wouldn't to say whether his contract was terminated early because of trouble with his public image.
Gatorade discontinued its Tiger Woods-brand drinks in November, a decision made before Woods'  problems became known.
Back in November Gatorade stuck by him as a sponsor, but now it's the third major endorsement the golfer has lost. AT&T Inc. and Accenture dropped Woods right after the cheating allegations.
Woods' agent, Mark Steinberg said, "We have been in discussions with Gatorade, and ...disappointed they have decided to not continue with Tiger in their marketing plans."
Gatorade owner PepsiCo, the world's second-biggest soda maker, also owns the Tropicana, Quaker and Frito-Lay brands.

Which is better - Charcoal or gas?

With BBQ season approaching the eternal question is asked again, which produces the best tasting food, charcoal or gas?
This is a very old question and perhaps only the wisest sages have the definitive answer.
But it's  your your taste buds that will make the ultimate decision when all is said and done.

Here are two arguments for your consideration:

"Good Housekeeping" magazine did a blind taste test and found that people could not tell the difference between hamburgers or skinless chicken breasts cooked over gas or charcoal.
But, people could tell the difference when it came to a steak.
It was decided that the longer you grill something the more the flavor of the fire gets into the food.
With that argument the hot ticket here would be the smoke.
Charcoal, produces smoke.
The kind of smoke that creates great food is the kind you get from charcoal.
Because charcoal produces smoke and heat together, the food absorbs the heat it also takes in the flavor of the smoke.
Gas grills on the other hand produces little smoke compared to charcoal.
But, not all smoke is equal.
Commercial charcoals and their cheap additives for easy lighting and their cheap charcoal made from sawdust isn't exactly the best choice for producing quality smoke.
Good charcoal mixed with chunks of good hardwood or lump charcoal made from real pieces of wood and is your secret for success.
If you are going to use crappy self-lighting charcoal then go with gas.
But if the flavor of grilled foods is important to you, and are willing to put the effort into charcoal cooking, this is the most obvious way to BBQ.

After that great argument who would want a gas grill?

First, how about the quick start to get a fire going:?
With a gas grill you don't have to calculate the right amount of charcoal, layering it correctly and the headache of getting a charcoal fire started.
Using lighter fluid to get a BBQ going quicker can leave that unpleasant odor which makes your food taste unpleasant.
Gas barbecues are connected directly to a gas line, you turn it on and you're ready to start, with no odor.

Most gas grills have a temperature control knob giving you control over the temperature, making the cooking experience much more manageable.

Then there's the easy clean up compared with the charcoal barbeque.
With charcoal, you have to wait for the charcoal to cool off and then find some way to get rid of them.
The great thing about a gas barbeque grill is that you simply wipe down the grill surface, turn off the gas and enjoy your food.
For the serious BBQ chef, who wants to spend more time with the guests than trying to get the charcoal under control, gas is the best choice.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Guinness -- How to Pour the Perfect Pint

What discussion of St. Patrick's day or Ireland would be complete without a Guinness?
In December 1759 Arthur Guinness, 34 years old brewed a beer relatively new to Ireland that contained roasted barley which gave it a characteristically dark colour.
He brewed the deep, rich beverage so well that he eventually ousted all imports from the Irish market, captured a share of the English trade and revolutionised the brewing industry.
Today, Arthur Guinness would be proud because GUINNESS is now also brewed in 35 countries around the world, but all these overseas brews must contain a flavoured extract brewed at the orginal location.
So the very special brewing skills of Arthur's brewery, remain at the heart of every one of the 10 million pints of GUINNESS enjoyed every day across the world.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

How to make the perfect Posh Chips

We really enjoy good chips, (french fries) and Heston Blumenthal has the perfect Posh chips.
Until he started experimenting in 1993, people thought they could get away with cooking their chips once in hot oil and have the perfect crunchy chip.
But they were wrong!
The French have long understood that a chip needs to be fried twice to achieve crunchy perfection , but Blumenthal wanted to take it even farther to create “a glass-like crust and a soft, fluffy center”.
He introduced an extra stage in the cooking process — a pre-boiling in water until the potato was all but falling apart.
The chips were then dried in the refrigerator, before two separate frying's in peanut oil.
This is how the celebrated triple-cooked chip was born.

  • Put a pot of salted water on, to a simmering boil.
  • Cut the potatoes into 1/2 inch strips.
  • Simmer until just cooked through – you don’t want them to fall apart.
  • Remove with a slotted spoon – place them where they can drain and dry in the refrigerator.
  • When they’re cool fry them in peanut oil that’s 250 degrees.
  • Fry them, but don’t let them color – remove from oil, drain; and place back into the fridge.
  • When cooled, fry them again at about 375 degrees until browned.
  • Drain, season and serve.

Irish Lamb Stew

It doesn't get much better than this, Irish Lamb Stew.
As we honor the traditions of Ireland and St.Patrick's day we can't think of a better way than this wonderful dish.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

What your coffee may reveal about you

The cup of coffee your drinking may be sending out subliminal messages to those around you.
At least that's what body language experts Judi James and James Moore write in their new book, "The You Code".
They say our caffeine choices reveal all kinds of things about our self esteem and stress levels.

THE ESPRESSO DRINKER - James and Moore describe the espresso as "the unfiltered cigarette of the coffee drinking world". Espresso drinkers tend to be moody, hard-bitten and hard working. They are into leadership and fast goals. They don't suffer fools and are hard living. The espresso drinker is not known for reliability or unswerving loyalty.

THE BLACK COFFEE DRINKER - This type is all about minimalism and takes a no-frills, direct approach to life. The black coffee drinker can be quiet and moody but prone to brief bursts of extroversion. "A difficult but potentially rewarding friend, colleague or partner," James and Moore conclude.

THE LATTE DRINKER - Typically metrosexuals or cuddly-toy collectors, latte drinkers are people with the need to please.
They have an overwhelming compulsion to be liked.
A latte drinking boss will use a baby voice to tell you off.
By taking a dark and dangerous drink and turning it into a comforting milky bedtime beverage, James and Moore say, latte drinkers reveal that while they may want to come across as hot shot contenders, they have an immature side.

THE CAPPUCCINO DRINKER - What's not to like about the extroverted, optimistic cappuccino drinker? Like their drink, cappuccino drinkers are all froth and bubble, bored by detail and liking - but not obsessed with - material objects. "Freud would have a field day here," write James and Moore. "Cappuccino froth gives the tongue the mother of all workouts and is all to do with the physicality of the experience rather than the basic consumption of the beverage."

THE INSTANT COFFEE DRINKER - These are cheerful, straight forward types, who like a laugh and live by the maxim "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". But instant coffee drinkers can be unadventurous in their careers and need to let others see the hidden depths in their personality. The no-nonsense instant coffee drinker is allergic to pretentious behavior, say James and Moore.

THE DECAF SOY MILK DRINKER - A self-righteous eco-worrier and attention seeker with a tendency to be picky and fussy. What's more, we are talking about pretentious, high-maintenance type who wants what they can't have and is disguising their true personality. "If caffeine gives palpitations and cow's milk brings you out in spots there's little hope for you in the cockroach society that is city dwelling", James and Moore conclude.

THE FRAPPUCINO DRINKER - Flighty and shallow, the frappucino drinker will try anything once - especially if a celebrity has done it first. They fancy themselves trend setters but send out the message that they are someone who favors style over substance. The frappucino drinker's relationships often last as long as their drink choice, according to James and Moore.

Colcannon, a traditional Irish dish

Here's an Irish dish we love, its Colcannon.
Colcannon, a traditional Irish dish created from mashed potatoes, cabbage, butter, salt, and pepper.
When we make it we like to add, cream, onions, scallions, garlic and Irish bacon.
Irish bacon is a much-loved meat, and if Ireland really has a national dish, this just might be a candidate.
In Ireland, the term "bacon" is used to mean any joint of pork except the leg, which is ham.
Here's a good video on how to make Colcannon, enjoy!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Corned Beef and Cabbage for St. Patrick’s Day

Is Corned Beef and Cabbage really Irish?
Well, the short answer is no, but then again, it is.
It was actually created in the United States in the mid 1800’s, though it was developed by Irish immigrants.
Corned beef and cabbage is often the first food we think of when it comes to St. Patrick’s Day.
But the custom of serving it for this holiday is relatively new.
The traditional Irish dish combines Irish bacon and cabbage.
The Irish bacon, the much-loved, much-missed dish that Irish immigrants of the nineteenth century were trying to make when they came to North America...and when they couldn't get the pork they really wanted, they made do with salted (corned) beef instead.
But when the the Irish immigrants came to America, they were introduced to corned beef by their Jewish neighbors, and those who could not afford the more costly bacon substituted it, eventually forming a new tradition.

Did you know Abraham Lincoln’s Innagural Dinner
was Corned Beef and Cabbage?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Anthony Bourdain's Alternate Universe

Tony once again invites us into his twisted imagination, mocking himself and others along the way.

Tony takes a look down the slippery slope of life after his show, No Reservations.

Tony is in dire need of a side kick to assist him on his travels.

McDonalds has a Chef?

Burgers, fries and nuggets and yes, McDonald's has a chef?
Who would have guessed?
He likes to go by Chef Dan, and before you ask, he attended the CIA (Culinary Institute of America) and even ran the kitchen at the Four Seasons Resort and Club outside Dallas.

So here, meet "Chef Dan" Coudreaut, McDonald's Chef:

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Cane Toad Saga

The Cane Toads of Australia, the toxic pests which environmentalists have tried for years to stop from killing off the native wildlife may have found a solution.
Something like a Gennie in a bottle, this is instead is a can of cat food.
Scientists from the University of Sydney said that putting cat food close to ponds inhabited by baby cane toads attracts carnivorous ants that are also immune to the toads' poisonous skin.
The ants then attack the baby toads and eat them.
"In one spot we tested, 98 percent of the baby toads were attacked within the first two minutes," researcher Rick Shine told Reuters. "It was a bit like a massacre."
Scientist have spent many years and a lot of money trying to find ways to get rid of these toxic toads that has plagued Australia's flora and fauna for decades and which is considered one of the country's worse environmental mistakes.
The toads were introduced from Hawaii back in 1935 in an effort to control native cane beetles.
Shine said the study was aimed at boosting the numbers of ants around the breeding areas of cane toads, and not upsetting the ecological balance by introducing the insects to an area that they wouldn't normally be in.
"All we're doing is encouraging the ants to flourish somewhere where they already flourish, letting them know there's particularly good food around so we get more of them down there on a very short-term basis," he said.
"Baby toads are incredibly stupid and their reaction to being attacked is to freeze. I think they're trying to advertise the fact they're poisonous and let the predator get a taste of that, but it doesn't work for the ant because it isn't affected."
While Shine realizes the study's findings will never eradicate cane toads from Australia he said cat food was a relatively simple way to try and limit their numbers.
"I'm optimistic that we'll find ways to reduce toads numbers, I think I'd have to be a very optimistic person indeed to think we'll ever get rid of cane toads from Australia," he added.

These toads may be ugly, poisonous, and kill native animals every year, but it still ends up on dinner plates in Asia.
The Cane toad's poison is highly prized in Chinese medicine and the meat is also eaten in some parts of the country and the demand for cane toads is quite substantial.
The Chinese have used toad poison, the skin, organs and gut for their traditional medicines such as,  as an expectorant, heart stimulant and as a diuretic.
It has also been used as a remedy for toothache and
sinus problems.
Toad toxin is considered a class one drug - like heroin,
and  needs a special permit to send it overseas.
Here's the video:  WATCH

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Two Burger King employees arrested for putting painkiller In food

Ernest McHenry says he ordered a fish sandwich from Burger King and found a pill inside.
The pill was identified as the painkiller hydrocodone.
(somewhere in that mess of a sandwich you can see the pill)
Ernest found it as he was putting salt and pepper on his sandwich.
Tomeria Kendrick and her mother visited the Burger King, bought a chicken sandwich at the drive-thru. Kendrick took one bite and immediately spit it out.
Inside the sandwich, she told police she found a pill.
Her mother took her to the local Fire Station; once she was cleared, she went back to Burger King , sandwich and pill in hand.
But another customer was not so lucky.
Police said a 21-year-old who went through the drive-through at the same Burger King ended up getting sick after one bite.
According to police, she went back to the restaurant and called police, she had a seizure and had to be taken to a hospital.
As a result of all this, two employees have been arrested in connection with the incident.
Woody Duclos, has been charged with poisoning food, with intent to kill or injure a person.
His co-worker buddy, Bryant Jones, has also been charged after he admitted selling the pills to Duclos.
(In the photo below, Woody on the left, Bryant on the right)

The district manager told police that Duclos was recently suspended for misconduct, and she believes "he did this because he was disgruntled and angry at the business."
Burger King issued this statement Tuesday following the arrests of two of its employees:
"Food safety is non-negotiable at BURGER KING® restaurants. This franchise restaurant, which is independently owned and operated, has terminated the two employees involved and is working with the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office on this investigation."

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

It's Not Just Coffee, It's Starbucks, and Burger King

It starts as summer ends, Burger King will start serving the Starbucks-owned brand Seattle's Best Coffee.
The cup of brew replaces Burger King's BK Joe coffee  and will be available by September.

Mary Boltz Chapman, editor in chief of industry trade magazine Chain Leader says, "You can't do breakfast anymore without a decent cup of coffee."
Expect to pay between $1 to $2.79, depending on size for a cup of coffee, hot or iced, along with optional vanilla or mocha flavor and whipped topping.

For Starbucks, the coffee chain is developing a strategy for the Seattle's Best Coffee chain that it acquired seven years ago.
"Together, with Burger King, we are making premium coffee far more accessible than it has ever been," says Michelle Gass, president of Seattle's Best.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

TV chef suspended - CAT - the tender white meat

Italian chef Beppe Bigazzi, 77 has been suspended from his position as a TV food expert for telling the television audience about the wonders of "tender,white meat."
He was suspended indefinitely from TV program "The Cooks' Challenge" for explaining how to tenderize cat meat by leaving it under running water for three days before cooking it into "a delight."
The Italian Animal Protection Agency demaded for Bigazzi to be permanently removed from the program.
"Anyone who goes on television to promote the taste of cat meat is guilty of instigating viewers to commit an act of cruelty to animals, a crime punishable by up to 18 months in prison," the group said in a statement.
Bigazzi later said he was talking about cats that were cooked in Tuscany, Italy, during food shortages of the 1930s and 1940s. He said he was not recommending people today cook cats.
"I was just talking about an old tradition," he said.
But actually, Chef Beppe, who has been on the show six days a week for over a decade did say,
“Cat soup is one of the best dishes from Valdarno.....I’ve eaten it many times and I assure you it’s a delight.”
Immediately after making this statement, the chef also said on air that he expected "racist" environmentalists would criticize his love of feline cookery.
“I’ve eaten it myself and it’s a lot better than many other animals,” he told viewers. “Better than chicken, rabbit or pigeon.” He said that for optimum flavor the meat should be “soaked in spring water for three days” before being stewed.
Elisa Isoardi, the shows host tried to steer Bigazzi off the subject.
During the commercial break she and the show’s producers tried to persuade him to apologise to viewers but he refused.


Happy Fat Tuesday

From all of us here at the
Voodoo Kitchen

Myspace Comments

Monday, February 15, 2010

Kevin Smith too fat to fly Southwest

Kevin Smith was kicked off a Southwest Air flight because he didn't fit comfortably into the seat.
(which means he is too fat)
"You [messed] with the wrong sedentary processed-foods eater!" Smith,  posted on Twitter.
It was one of many Tweets recounting the actor/director's humiliating expulsion Saturday from the Oakland-to-Burbank, California, flight.
Southwest said in a statement airline officials had called Smith to offer their "heartfelt apologies," but also stated his removal was for the "safety and comfort of all customers."
Smith, 39, originally purchased two tickets "as he's been known to do when traveling Southwest," the airline noted, but when he decided to fly standby on an earlier flight, only one seat remained.
After Southwest seated him, they then asked him  to leave.
"If a customer cannot comfortably lower the armrest and infringes on a portion of another seat, a customer seated adjacent would be very uncomfortable and a timely exit from the aircraft in the event of an emergency might be compromised if we allow a cramped, restricted seating arrangement," Southwest said.
Smith, says, "I know I'm fat," and he was in no mood to accept an apology when the airline gave him a $100 voucher when he arrived in Burbank on a later flight.
"I broke no regulation, offered no 'safety risk' (what, was I gonna roll on a fellow passenger?)" he tweeted.
"I saw someone bigger than me on THAT flight! But I wasn't about to throw a fellow Fatty under the plane as I'm being profiled. But he and I made eye contact, and he was like 'Please don't tell...'"
After landing in Burbank, Smith wrote, "Don't worry: wall of the plane was opened and I was airlifted out while Richard Simmons supervised."
After a storm of angry online comments from Smith and his fans, the airline issued an apology first from its own Twitter account and later in a statement on its website titled Not So Silent Bob, a jovial jab at the Silent Bob character Smith plays in many of his films.
"We would like to echo our tweets and again offer our heartfelt apologies to you," the statement said.
The airline said it also accommodated Smith on a later flight, gave him a $100 voucher and apologized by phone.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Millions of children are hungry - or are they obese?

Some reports even an estimated 12 million school age children are at risk of hunger in the U.S., according to government numbers provided by an anti-hunger group.
The group says these children could suffer developmental damage if they are not properly fed.
States like, Kansas, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas were among the states, of 11 where children regularly experience hunger.  Yet, on the map below we see a different story.
According to this, these same same states have a lot of fat children. 
Maybe they are eating too many cupcakes to fight hunger.

But then again, according to the Agriculture Department, 11 percent of households lacked enough food for an active, healthy life, and that's before before the economy worsened.
A lack of  food can have a lasting impact on physical and behavioral health, along with development and academic achievement.

At the same time President Obama has created a task force on childhood obesity as part of a nationwide campaign being launched by his wife, Michelle.
"This has enormous promise in improving the health of our children, in giving support to parents to make the kinds of healthy choices that are often very difficult," Obama said from the Oval Office.
Obama praised his wife, who attended the signing, for tackling one of "the most urgent health issues facing the country."
Michelle Obama said "I would move heaven and earth to give my kids all the chance in the world for them to be at the top of their game in every way, shape and form,.  She stated that they operate under the principle that every family wants the same thing for their kid, so we're going to figure out how to make it easier for them to get it.

The task force numbers 12.5 million children, or nearly one in three kids ages 2 to 17, are considered obese or overweight, with another 16.5 million teetering on the edge of becoming so, making them candidates in adulthood for diabetes and heart disease. The obesity epidemic is so severe that it threatens to make the lifespan of the nation's youngest generation shorter than our own.

So which is?
Are there 12 million children going hungry everyday, or are there 12 million children getting fatter everyday?
Or is it possible there is a combined total of 24 million children in the United States with hunger or obesity issues.
It's difficult to know which tune to dance to.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The quest - eat as many nuggets as they could in one minute

The Chick-fil-A restaurant in Willoughby hosted a nugget-eating contest Friday night.
The quest was for contestants to eat as many nuggets as they could in one minute.
The winning prize? A free meal each week for one year.
We don't believe PETA help sponsor this event.
Congratulations to the winner.
Watch how it all goes down.


Friday, February 12, 2010

Man V Food - New Orleans

Adam Richman takes us on a New Orleans food tour.
We enjoy Man V Food, and we hope you enjoy this look around our favorite city, a place we call home, New Orleans.

Sandwiches Inspired By Skyscrapers

A famous Italian chef says he is creating a trio of sandwiches in the image of a skyscraper complex being constructed in Milan. Chef Gualtiero Marchesi, 79, said he already has the sandwiches, inspired by the Milan CityLife complex, planned out in his head but he is not yet divulging any of the ingredients.

While the world waits for Chef Marchesi,  here are some other skyscraper sandwiches for your consideration.

Carnegie Deli Pastrami Sandwich
854 7th Ave, New York NY 10019 (at 55th Street) 212-757-2245

The vile sandwich, over 12ft tall, and was created by George Lambert of Hackney.
This creation contained 500 slices of bread, 20 lettuces, 65 tomatoes, 30 bananas, 25 carrots, 1500g of cheese and, of course, the appalling spread, Marmite.
The only thing missing was Haggis.

Tommy Pastrami, a West Coast deli chain, in Orange County, CA.
For $12.95, you get the Skyscraper  pastrami sandwich, as well as two drinks and two dill pickles.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

What is Haggis anyway?

There are many of us who just don't know much about the foods of Scotland.
But the one meat dish that keeps coming to mind when we think of Scotland, is of course, Haggis.
Haggis is a meat dish which is made by stuffing a sheep or cow stomach with offal, (offal is a culinary term used to refer to the entrails and internal organs of a butchered animal) oatmeal, and an assortment of spices.
It is then boiled until it is thoroughly cooked.
Even though people think of haggis as being the quintessential Scottish dish, haggis is actually much older than  Scotland. 
The Greeks and Romans both ate a version of haggis, and it is highly probable that the Romans brought the dish with them as they colonized Britain. 
Historically, many people have regarded haggis as a poor man's dish, since it uses the unwanted cuts of the animal, although modern haggis is considered more of a delicacy.
Just for starters, the offal used in haggis includes the heart, kidneys, and lungs, and the liver is often included as well. 

Once the filling is mixed, it can be stuffed into a clean stomach, and then the stomach is sewn shut.
When haggis is boiled, it is important to poke a few holes in the stomach to keep it from exploding. 

(always good advice when cooking)
Here's something else to remember, watch the oatmeal, it expands as it cooks. 
(we don't want any Haggis explosions)
Once the haggis is cooked, it can be sliced and served mashed potatoes, although it can be served with other foods as well.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

It's your turn at Bat

The flying fox bat has been a favorite dish for years,
(mind you, not by us) but for many people it's a delicacy.
Because of their popularity these fruit bats that have been severely over-exploited for food.
The fruit bat is regarded as one of the most important delicacies and is in great demand for important occasions such as weddings and fiestas.
They can also pass on viruses, a veterinarian in Australia was hospitalized with the rare Hendra virus after treating two dying horses.
The virus is carried by flying foxes, which are believed to spread it when their urine, saliva or droppings get into animal feed.
But don't let a little thing like that stop you. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Grocery Store Butt Sniffer

We aren't really sure what's going on here, and we've watched this video several times.

The setting takes place in a grocery store, where we see a man sniffing the butt of a store employee.
Plymouth, England, police are searching for the butt smelling man, about 40 years old, who smelled the worker's rear end at least 20 times on consecutive weekends.
The video shows the strange man pretending to pick items off shelves before crouching behind the employee. With his face inches away, he takes a whiff, and even gets so close, his nose touches the employees butt.

Take a look for yourself.

Cheers, the benefits of alcohol

After we ran the post about beer and bones, we thought we would offer up a little something about the benefits of alcohol.
You already know that red wine has heart benefits, but what does drinking have on the rest of your body? Research shows that moderate alcohol intake, no more than two drinks per day (one drink is equal to 12 ounces of beer, four ounces of wine or one-and-a-half ounces of 80-proof spirits)—has a variety of healthy benefits.

Just for starters, here are three benefits:

1. Better Memory
Adults 75 years and older who have a drink or two a day end up with a 37 percent lower risk of developing dementia compared to those who completely abstain. Alcohol may stimulate the release of acetylcholine, a brain chemical important for memory.
2. Less Inflammation
Research found that “Alcohol helps with inflammation and definitely will reduce pain,” says Alirio Melendez, MD, PhD, senior lecturer at the University of Glasgow. “Many scientists believe that a glass of wine each day may help control potential inflammatory diseases that would otherwise appear.”
3. Longer Life
Harvard researchers found that drinking moderate amounts of alcohol was linked to living longer.  And red wine contains important antioxidants that could help people live longer, says study author Dimitros Trichopoulos, MD, professor of cancer prevention and epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Experts agree that if you don’t drink to begin with, don’t start. But, a drink or two per day has some potential health benefits. The key word here is moderation.
Most studies found that excessive or binge drinking cancels out any healthy benefits, not to mention that it can result in a host of other serious problems, like liver damage and heart failure.

Drinking beer helps strengthen bones

Beer drinkers around the globe have reason to celebrate.
A moderate amount of beer may strengthen bones, according to a study from the National Institute of Health.
Researchers found beer contains silicon, an ingredient which is known to help build bones.

"But not all beers are silicon-equals," said Dr. Dave Hnida.
"Pale ales top the list of bone builders. They contain an average of 36 milligrams of silicon," Hnida said. "That's followed by regular ale with 33 milligrams, regular lagers have 24, wheat beers have about 18 and light beers have about 16 milligrams."The recommended amount of silicon ranges from 20 to 50 milligrams a day.

Hnida said silicon can be found in foods such as fish, apples, bananas, corn and other fruits and vegetables, but it appears the silicon in beer is more easily absorbed by the body."
That's what many of you wanted to hear, yes?

"But remember, drinking more beer won't make your bones unbreakable," warned Hnida.
"In fact, drink too much and your bones will actually lose calcium making them weaker."
That, you didn't want to hear.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Heart Attack Grill Sues Heart Stoppers Sports Grill

Remember the Heart Attack grill?
Back in July we ran a post about the 8000 calorie cheeseburger seen above.

Well, it's time to take off the latex gloves because the two heart attack themed burger joints are slugging it out.

Heart Attack Grill in Chandler, Ariz. has sued Heart Stoppers Sports Grill in Delray Beach, Fla. because they say the theme is too similar to their own restaurant.

Both restaurants have fat menus, both have scantily-clad "nurse" waitresses,
both have the EKG design.
At both restaurants, customers over 350 lbs. eat for free.
The only difference? At Heart Attack Grill, customers who finish the biggest burger on the menu get wheeled out of the restaurant in a wheelchair.
At Heart Stoppers, they don't.
According to Heart Attack's owners, the owners of Heart Stoppers were in talks to open a franchise of  the Heart Attack Grill before they decided to open their own restaurant in December.

Lawyers for Heart Stoppers say the restaurants are actually different.
"It's not the same concept, the Arizona restaurant's concept is high-caloric food that is bad for you and will basically kill you.  My guys have a restaurant that is medically themed . My clients' restaurant seems more like an actual medical facility."
Uh, really? Did they say, a medical facility?
Take a look at their burger (below) and you decided.

The Super Bowl Ads

The Super Bowl ads, everyone has their favorites.
Some were awful, others really fun.
Here's a look at just a few of this years Super Bowl food commercials.

The Snicker's candy bar ad with Betty White and Abe Vigoda.

The Bud Light Astroid ad.

The Dorito's Casket

Sunday, February 7, 2010

In Paris, the customer is not always right

We've had it driven into our brains, "the customer is always right," right?, well, maybe not.
Granted, Paris is exactly known for its sense of service, in fact the customer can be little more than an irritant. Parisians in the service industry simply do not buy into the Anglo Saxon belief, that the customer is always right.
The message is clear, "I'm not your slave."
Outside the restaurant, perhaps people are equals, but once back at the eatery, where that awkward feeling of service and the client exists, the waiter become aware of a power struggle and quickly reestablishes authority.
We aren't suggesting being rude, only a armatures do that. But in America and in the UK, food servers are often just that, servers.
They arrive at your table to telling you his or her name, and announcing, "I'll be serving you tonight."
Food servers, after all, only promises to be serving you, looking for a good tip but, in Paris, providing quality is a matter of personal pride. In Paris, your waiter expects to be addressed formally as Monsieur, in exactly the same way he will address you.
Right at the beginning, it's understood, that the customer does not have the upper hand, it's is a deliberate way to take control of the playing field.

The Voodoo Kitchen has been in the food and beverage business for a long time, here's what we know:
When you provide service, do so out of pride, not because of the tip.
You aren't serving food, you are serving people, and it's your talent and knowledge that makes the difference, it's because of that, the tips will come.
It's your self respect, and self confidence that will command respect.
You need customers, but not any particular customer, so never allow anyone to make you feel second class, never!
Remember, not everyone has to be your customer.
You want to serve the best food with the best service, to the best customers.

There comes a time, however, when a restaurant reaches a point where it understands who it is and what it offers. It realizes it cannot be everything to everyone or it will simply become watered-down and meaningless.

When customers don’t understand what your service stands for and complain, weak management often scramble and try to change their service policies into what the customer thinks they want.
But confident management realize, there is nothing wrong with informing a customer that it just isn't working out, and it's best they eat somewhere else.
The problem often is, managers, and business don't really know who they are.
They lack the confidence in what they do and in what they offer.
To be successful, you need to be an expert or the best at what you do.
Why else would someone want to eat in your restaurant?
Because you are the cheapest place in town?
Are those the customers you want?
We hope not.
Why jump through hoops for people who are looking for the cheapest dive around?
If you are the best at what you do,  why would you compromise what you do for someone who doesn’t understand what you offer?
Before you grab the pitchforks, you have to understand who and what you are as a restuarnt.
Be sure you have a solid foundation and confident that what make is the best, and be passionate about that.
If you have confidence with an attitude of service to your customers, it is then,  you will see that the “customer” is not always right, and not always right for you.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Chinese Zoo feeds live cows to tigers as tourist attraction

For $205.00 tourists can take photos of tigers killing and eating live cows at the Siberian Tiger Park, in Harbin, China 
Tourists can choose from a menu what they’d like to see the tigers kill and eat up close and personal.
Amateur photographer Chris Geddes, 31, captured the event.
He said chickens were served as appetizers to the tigers followed by a live cow that was dumped from a truck, then attacked immediately.
“It was dragged to the ground within seconds,” he reported,  and the tourists relished in the attraction, taking photos and watching with binoculars from a bus nearby.


Friday, February 5, 2010

The Five Second Rule

 Click on the chart above to enlarge it.

The 5-Second Rule (or the 3 second rule) is one of the most popular beliefs known anywhere and everywhere.

The "rule" states that once food that has fallen on the floor is still safe to eat if you pick it up within five seconds.

As with most things however, the rule isn't as simple as may appear at first glance.

Here is a simple fact you probably already know, the 5-second rule really isn't a rule at all.

The truth is, food dropped on the floor can just a dangerous risky to eat regardless of the five seconds.
As you will see in the video, some foods are riskier than others.

Bacteria, and not very nice ones, are everywhere

No matter how clean you are, there is bacteria on every surface of every home.

For example, your cutting board has 200 times more bacteria than your toilet.
Your sink is an E.Coli paradise, and the dish sponge, yikes, you don't even want to know.

So, here are a few rules to remember:
1. A clean-looking floor doesn't mean it's really clean.
2. Faster is always better, but fast may not always be fast enough.
3. Bacteria can attach to your food as soon as it hits the floor. That means food left on the floor for an instant can get contaminated. And foods with wet surfaces, can pick up bacteria easily.
4. When in doubt, trash it.

So, the bottom line results are depressing.
Bacteria such as Salmonella which causes diarrhea and vomiting can survive for weeks on carpet, wood and tiles and can contaminate food within a few seconds of contact.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Chef Paul Prudhomme - Try Bronze instead of Blackened fish

New Orleans Chef Paul Prudhomme says,"My advice to people at home is bronzing rather that blackening," This avoids the smoke and the risk of handling a red-hot skillet while still achieving an excellent result."
Chef Prudhomme, the father of blackened redfish, says to make blackened fish, the skillet needs to be red hot and causes a lot of smoke in the kitchen and it's best done outdoors.

This bronzed talapia can cook indoors without smoke and keeps the fish moist.
The secret is to keep the skillet at the right temperature.
The fish should take 7 to 8 minutes to cook.
If it takes much longer, the skillet is not hot enough.

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
3/4 pound talapia fillet
1 tablespoon olive oil

Mix cayenne pepper, garlic powder, oregano and thyme together.
Spoon half of spice mixture onto one side of the fish, pressing it into the flesh.
Heat a skillet over high heat and add the oil.
When it is very hot, add the fish, seasoned side down.
Spread remaining spice mixture over top of the fish.
Cook until the underside is bronze in color, 3 to 4 minutes.
Cook second side 3 to 4 minutes or until cooked through.
Makes 2 servings.

Journalism - because it's fun

Yeah, we know it's not food related,
but it's fun.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Tesco supermarket bans shopping in pajamas

UK supermarket chain Tesco says, "no shoes, no shirt, no service," and oh yes, "no pajamas."
Tesco is now banning sleepware from their stores.
Their sign now reads:

Security guards are enforcing the new dress code after multitudes of mothers have gone shopping at Tesco in their pajamas.
"We do not have a strict dress code, but we don't want people shopping in their nightwear in case it offends other customers," a Tesco spokesman. "We're not a nightclub with a strict dress code, and jeans and trainers are of course more than welcome. We do, however, request that customers do not shop in their PJs or nightgowns."

Tesco customers are angry!

"I've got lovely pairs of pajamas, with bears and penguins on them," says one customer.
"I've worn my best ones today, just so I look tidy. I walked in with my trolley [shopping cart] and the security guard came over and told me to leave. He said it offends people. But I've never seen anyone offended. You see loads of people going in wearing jogging bottoms, what's the difference?"
Another angry mother said, "This is just pathetic and shows how snobbish some people can be."

While we'd agree with the snobbish part, it really only take a minute to throw on a pair of jeans, shirt and sneakers.
And while we're at it, we really hate to see hair in curlers.

Kopi Luvak - the most expensive coffee in the world

Kopi Luwak is the rarest, most expensive coffee in the world.
A single cup served in a coffee house can cost you $48.00.
A pound of Kopi Luwak coffee will run you about $300.00
Do you know why?
It's because the coffee actually comes from the excrements of an Indonesian animal called the Luwak.

(here's the Luwak) 

This cat-like creature eats only the ripest coffee berries, but because its stomach is unable to digest them, they come out whole.
The stomach acids and enzymes that perform the fermentation of the beans give the coffee a special aroma.
(no doubt)
Kopi Luvak is a luxury gourmet product that can’t be bought for less than $50 for 100 grams.
Just don't try anything exotic with the catbox.