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Archive for July, 2011

FOOD HOLIDAY: Cheese Sacrifice Purchase Day

This one’s a bit quirky.

Cheese Sacrifice Purchase Day is a “food holiday” for which one purchases cheese and “sacrifices” it to a mouse trap, in order to rid one’s home of mice.

It sounds like a 19th-century British holiday to us, but we can’t find any knowledgeable references—just greeting cards to mark the occasion (see the photo).

And the holiday doesn’t make much sense: If one’s home had unwanted mice guests, wouldn’t every day be a Cheese Sacrifice Purchase Day?

(As a side tip, peanut butter works much better than cheese. Clever mice can snitch the cheese from the trap, but they have to stick around to lick the PB.)


Send this greeting card to celebrate the day.
Photo courtesy


But enough about the mice. Since we have an established holiday with only scant details—which themselves are not too relevant with today’s modern housing construction—let’s reinvent it.

How would you/will you sacrifice some cheese today?

We’re going to sacrifice two pounds of it for a luscious fondue. Check out 18 different cheese fondue recipe variations.

Can’t decide what cheese to sacrifice? Check out our Cheese Glossary.


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RECIPE: Barack Obama Sushi

Barack Obama sushi by chef Ken Kawasuma.
Photo courtesy MSN Japan.


Somehow we missed this back in 2009, and only recently came across it on the MSN Japan website.

Sushi Chef Ken Kawasumi of Tokyo Sushi Academy took the 2009 championship title in Japan’s National Sushi Awards, with his sushi interpretation of President Barack Obama.

This is a sushi roll, rolled on a bamboo mat like all other maki sushi. How can anyone top it?

Obamazushi is just one of the stupefying creations of the brilliant Chef Kawasumi, whom we consider to be the Andy Warhol of edible art.

Check out “Ken Kawasumi” on Google Images. It will make you want to book a trip to Yokohama to dine at his restaurant, Sushisho Kawasumi.


In fact, Sushisho Kawasumi has replaced The Fat Duck as the restaurant to which we’d most like to win a trip. Kawasumi’s seemingly limitless repertoire extends from panda-shaped sushi to life-size sushi “paintings,” including an edible version of Van Gogh’s “Sunflowers.”

If you won’t be heading to Yokahama anytime soon, check out Chef Kawasumi’s books:

  • Encyclopedia Of Sushi Rolls
  • Fun & Fancy Sushi For Every Day & Parties
    Learn your sushi by reading our beautiful Sushi Glossary.


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    PRODUCT: Happy Goat Caramel Sauce

    We liked Happy Goat caramels—made from goat’s milk—so much that we made them a Top Pick of The Week.

    In our review, we suggested making caramel sauce by melting the caramels.

    Now, Happy Goat has launched its own goat caramel sauce in two flavors:

  • Goat Milk & Vanilla Bean Caramel Sauce. Made with a base of evaporated goat’s milk, it’s very buttery with good vanilla bean flavor and a touch of sea salt (9-ounce jar, $13.99).
  • Scotch Caramel Sauce. This inspired flavor adds 12-year single malt scotch whiskey to the Vanilla Bean Caramel Sauce (10-ounce jar, $19.99). It’s a delight, but we might try and save the money by adding our own scotch to Happy Goat’s Vanilla Bean sauce (we can’t wait to make peaty, smoky Laphroig caramel sauce). If you’re not a scotch lover, substitute bourbon or rum.
    You can purchase both on the company’s website.


    Photo by Jaclyn Nussbaum | THE NIBBLE.


    Try dipping apple slices in the flavor of your choice. (Or why choose? Try both!)


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    TIP OF THE DAY: Reasons To Use Superfine Sugar

    Pick up some superfine sugar. It dissolves
    instantly in cold drinks. Photo courtesy
    Domino Sugar.


    If you put sugar in iced tea or other cold beverages and cocktails, or make frosting, mousse or other uncooked desserts, you may want to pick up a box of superfine sugar.

    Superfine sugar, also known as ultrafine sugar (and caster or castor sugar in the U.K.), is more finely pulverized than table sugar (granulated sugar). The grain size of regular table sugar is about .5mm; superfine sugar grains are about 3.5mm.

    The result is that superfine sugar dissolves instantly. No vigorous stirring is required to get the sugar to dissolve; no undissolved sugar sinks to the bottom of the glass.

    Many pastry chefs and bakers prefer using superfine sugar in order to create higher-rising cakes with a slightly finer crumb (grain). For the same reason, superfine sugar is used to make delicate baked goods such as meringues and angel food cakes. As a result, superfine sugar is sometimes called bakers’ sugar.

    Just substitute the same amount as regular granulated sugar in your recipes.

    You can find superfine sugar in most supermarkets, or buy it online.


    Make Superfine Sugar. You can convert table sugar to superfine sugar in a blender or food processor. Let the sugar powder settle for a few minutes before removing the lid of the appliance.

  • Check out the different types of sugar in our Sugar Glossary.

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    PRODUCT: Want’ems Wonton Chips

    When we were growing up, chips meant potato chips or corn chips.

    Today, the chip aisle is bursting with choices. There are bean chips, nut chips, plantain chips, rice chips, tortilla chips and vegetable chips.

    And now, there are wonton chips.

    Inspired by the wonton strips served at Chinese restaurants (great for dipping in hot mustard or duck sauce), the product was developed by two friends who had enjoyed many a meal in Boston’s Chinatown.

    Unlike the darker colored restaurant wonton strips, Want’ems are pale and light in texture, made from whole grain wheat flour and fried in canola oil. They taste like wonton strips “lite.”

    The all-natural chips are available in Original and Asian BBQ. The BBQ has added hints of soy sauce, garlic and brown sugar.


    The new chip in town: Want’ems wonton
    chips. Photo by Jaclyn Nussbaum | THE


    The company also makes three varieties of sweet dipping sauce, but we prefer hot mustard. Try Colman’s Mustard, available in prepared and the original powdered form.

    Want’ems is aiming for national distribution, so they may not be easy to find at your nearest store. But they’re available on Amazon.

    Learn more about Want’ems at

    Find reviews of our favorite snacks in our Gourmet Snacks Section.


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