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Food Sunday: Food News You Can Use

photo: State Library of New South Wales via Flickr

Good afternoon, folks. We’re still cleaning up from the flood up here in Upstate New York (for those concerned, Chez Siberia because of it’s location – several miles north of the rivers and several hundred feet higher than the rivers – came through with a little bit of water in the basement. We feel very very lucky) but the weather has been advantageous this week and looks as if it will be dry next week as well, which helps. On the other hand, we have had three nights of frosts. Accuweather giveth and Accuweather taketh away..


To the News!
Eatcher Broccoli! A new study shows that what you eat WITH cooked broccoli can make a huge difference not only in how much cancer fighting stuff you get out of it but also WHERE your body digests it (who knew it’s also location, location, location when it comes to digestion?). “Teaming fresh broccoli with a spicy food that contains the enzyme myrosinase significantly enhances each food’s individual cancer-fighting power and ensures that absorption takes place in the upper part of the digestive system where you’ll get the maximum health benefit, suggests a new University of Illinois study. To get this effect, spice up your broccoli with broccoli sprouts, mustard, horseradish, or wasabi. The spicier, the better; that means it’s being effective,” said Elizabeth Jeffery, a U of I professor of nutrition.” Broccoli

Infected melons for over a decade and consumers still don’t know what to do.
“Purchase cantaloupes that are not bruised or damaged. If buying fresh-cut cantaloupe, be sure it is refrigerated or surrounded by ice. After purchase, refrigerate cantaloupes promptly. Wash hands with hot, soapy water before and after handling fresh cantaloupes.

Scrub whole cantaloupes by using a clean produce brush and cool tap water immediately before eating. If you use soap or detergents, be sure to rinse the melon well before slicing. Use clean cutting surfaces and utensils when cutting cantaloupes. Wash cutting boards, counter tops, dishes, and utensils with hot water and soap between the preparation of raw meat, poultry, or seafood and the preparation of cantaloupe.

If there happens to be a bruised or damaged area on a cantaloupe, cut away those parts before eating it. Leftover cut cantaloupe should be discarded if left at room temperature for more than two hours.” Bad Cantaloupes

The Wizard of Oz and the Juice Box. There’s been a lot of coverage about claims (and by the way, this is not actually new; there has been testing going on since last year when the St. Petersburg Times published test results on Motts) by TV’s Dr. Oz about apple juice fed to kids. However, the bottom line really needs to be (and the American Academy of Pediatrics promotes something close to this) IMHO that little kids should not be given fruit juice AT ALL. Period. Not in a bottle, not in a cup (not here or there, not drunk anywhere..). Whole fruit. Washed. Peeled if it has a peel that needs to be taken off. OK? Get the whole deal, the moisture, the sugar, the fiber, everything. Not juice. The whole argument about ‘too much arsenic” “not enough arsenic to make a difference” and so on is totally moot. Kids should not be given high sugar liquids to drink. One juice box of Juicy Juice Apple™ has 14 grams of sugar. That is almost 3 teaspoons of sugar in an approximately 4 ounce juice box. And we all know that kids drink more than one juice box and as a matter of fact, parents give this stuff to them multiple times a day. As a point of comparison, there are 40 grams of sugar in a 12-ounce can of Coke™. If you take that juice box with 14 grams of sugar and multiply it by 3 (3 times 4 equals 12 ounces), you get…52 grams of sugar. A CAN OF COKE HAS 40 GRAMS OF SUGAR, PEOPLE!!! Most parents in their right minds, if asked, would say, “OMG, no – I’d never give my baby a can of Coke to drink – too much sugar!!!” And yet…on an ounce for ounce basis, they are actually doing much worse. So forget the whole arsenic from Chinese apple juice argument. Juice Box Mania

If you’re still eating ground turkey…… The illness statistics on the Cargill salmonella infected ground turkey continue to climb; 116 people sickened in 32 states…and it just keeps going. The greatest number of victims are in Texas, Ohio, Illinois and Michigan. There’s a good map at the link. Ground Turkey Toll Climbs

And in microscopically local news – with the threatened frosts this week, I took the opportunity to get out into the garden and harvest all the basil I could grab and cover the rest. I got a whole paper grocery bag crammed with leaves, which I washed thoroughly and then put into the food dryer we have. That huge bag turned into…a gallon size Zip-lock™ bag which I squeezed all the air out of then put into the freezer. Yum. Supposedly, the weather is going to warm up this next coming week, so perhaps we have a couple of weeks grace before The Big One.

In any case – be careful this week. Wash your hands, wash your food, and stay healthy.

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Snarky housewife from Upstate New York. Into gardening, fiber arts, smallholder farming.