THE NIBBLE BLOG: Products, Recipes & Trends In Specialty Foods
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Archive for September, 2010

PRODUCT: Dr. McDougall Healthy Soup

Photo courtesy Right Foods.

The doctor is in…and he’s making healthy soup.

John McDougall, M.D., physician and nutritionist, has been studying the effects of nutrition on health for more than 20 years. A founding father of the modern wellness movement, he established the McDougall Program in Santa Rosa, California, to help people improve their health.

His line of foods features oatmeal cups—add water and heat, (loved ‘em)—soup cups and low-sodium soups (bland). The newest entry is a line of heat-and-eat soups, about two cups per carton.

The soups are packed full of good things—veggies, brown rice and other whole grains, plus black beans, peas and lentils. Some are so thick, they could be a side dish!

Needless to say, we enjoyed these fat-free, dairy-free vegan soups as a light lunch, snack and dinner course. Read the full review.


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FOOD HOLIDAY: National Coffee Day Trivia

It’s National Coffee Day. Can you answer these questions, posed by Illy Coffee?

Q. In which country was coffee discovered?
a. Ethiopia
b. Yemen
c. Arabia

A. Ethiopia. Read the History Of Coffee.

Q. True or False: Ounce per ounce, espresso contains more caffeine than brewed coffee.
a. True
b. False

A. False! Brewed coffee contains more caffeine. Learn all about espresso in our Espresso Glossary.

Q. Is espresso a bean or a roast?
a. Bean
b. Roast
c. Neither

A. Neither. It is a coffee preparation method.


Photo by Flavio Takemoto | SXC.

Q. What color are coffee beans before roasting?
a. Tan
b. Green
c. Red

A. Green. See a photo of the coffee cherries on the tree, alongside green coffee beans and roasted coffee beans.

Q. Which country is the world’s largest coffee producer?
a. Brazil
b. Colombia
c. Indonesia

A. Brazil. It produces 22.5 million 132-pound bags annually, which is one-third of the world’s coffee. Columbia, which grows about 10% of the world’s coffee, is second with 10.5 million bags. They are followed by Indonesia (6.7 million bags) and Vietnam (5.8 million bags). Learn more about coffee in our Coffee Glossary.

Happy National Coffee Day! Enjoy a good cup or two.

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TIP OF THE DAY: Pasta & Breadcrumbs

For crunch, toss breadcrumbs on your
pasta. Photo © Monkey Business | Fotolia

In southern Italy, toasted breadcrumbs, instead of grated cheese, are often sprinkled over pasta. You don’t even need a sauce for this authentic recipe—just toss the pasta in extra virgin olive oil.

The custom survives in the U.S. largely as macaroni and cheese topped with toasted breadcrumbs.

Yesterday, we lunched on a delicious lobster mac & cheese, topped with breadcrumbs, from Hancock Gourmet Lobster Company. But you don’t have to go so upscale to enjoy your mac & cheese with a crunchy top.

Whether for mac & cheese or another pasta dish, simply buy gourmet seasoned breadcrumbs or make your own. If you make them, experiment with favorite seasonings. Garlic, parsley, lemon zest and Parmesan are classic; but you can try cayenne, chili or other flavors you especially enjoy.

We prefer to use seasoned panko, the wonderful Japanese breadcrumbs. You can get a set of five different flavors of panko breadcrumbs—Garlic, Mustard, Southwest and Teriyaki, plus Unseasoned, from Iron Chef. They’re certified kosher.

Why not offer guests both breadcrumbs and grated cheese with their pasta: Who says you can’t have both?


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TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Riceworks Rice Chips

Love a crunchy snack? Want a healthier one?

Try rice chips, made of two whole grains: brown rice and corn.

We love them so much, we can’t stop eating them.

There are six flavors, from sweet Baked Cinnamon to Salsa Fresca, Sea Salt, Sweet Chili and Tangy BBQ. While we heartily devoured every flavor, the standout is Parmesan.

Beyond snacking from the bag and dipping, the chips can be served instead of crackers and bread alongside soups and salads. Crumbled, they make “croutons” and crusts.

The chips are gluten-free, vegan and certified kosher.

Brown rice makes a healthy yet absolutely
delicious chip. Photo by Katharine
Pollak | THE NIBBLE.

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GOURMET GIVEAWAY: Allens Hill Farm Pancake & Waffle Gift Box

One of our favorite whole grain and
multigrain pancake mixes. Photo by
Hannah Kaminsky | THE NIBBLE.

Love pancakes and waffles? (That’s a rhetorical question.)

You’ll love them even more if you win this week’s Gourmet Giveaway prize from Allens Hill Farm. It was one of the favorites we tasted of 99 different whole grain and multigrain pancake and waffle mixes (read the entire review).

This week’s winner will receive a pancake and waffle gift box, which includes three delicious pancake mixes, one Belgian waffle mix and apple syrup. The 8 Grain Buttermilk Pancake Mix was among the best whole grain and multigrain pancake mixes we tried. Read more about it. Retail value: Approximately $33.00.

  • To Enter This Gourmet Giveaway: Go to the box at the bottom of the first page of our Pancake Glossary and click to enter your email address for the prize drawing. This contest closes on Monday, October 4th at noon, Eastern Time. Good luck!
  • For more information about Allens Hill Farm, visit

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