A Bunch of Grapes Sell for US$5,400 in Japan

A lucky Japanese couple will be presented with a US$5,400 bunch of the world’s priciest grapes at their wedding.

Thirty Ruby Roman grapes – which cost around US$180 a pop – were purchased at an auction by a wedding hall operator in Ishikawa, reports AFP.

The grapes weighed some 28 ounces and an individual grape can reach 1.2 inches in diameter –or about the size of a ping pong ball, according to public broadcaster NHK.

“I was surprised to see a higher price than I had originally imagined, but I would like bridal couples to savor them and have a great memory,” the hall owner told NHK.

The grapes are considered good luck and their taste is sweet and fresh.

The Japanese are obsessed with perfectly-formed fruit that can fetch a fortune. Melons there sell for the price of a new car and a single peach can go for about $25.

Source: Fox News

What’s for Lunch?

Home-cooked Bento

The Menu

  • Fried Cakes of Ground Pork and Cabbage
  • Sausage Wrapped in Fried Egg
  • Chicken Hamburg
  • Fish Sausage with Cheese
  • Cherry Tomato, Cucumber and Lemon
  • Rice with Cod Roe Seasoning Powder

Macaroni and Cheese with Lobster


16 oz macaroni pasta
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp white pepper
3 cups milk
1 pinch ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp salt
3 cups shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1 tsp butter, melted
1-2 lobster tails, chopped

Seasoning for lobster

2 tbsp of butter
1 tbsp of olive oil
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp dried parsley


  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
  2. Fill a large pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling, stir in the macaroni, and return to a boil. Cook the pasta uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is cooked through but still slightly firm, about 8 minutes. Drain well.
  3. Melt 1/4 cup butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. When the butter starts to foam and bubble, stir in the flour; cook on medium heat until flour just begins to turn pale yellow, 3 to 4 minutes. Add thyme, cayenne pepper, and white pepper. Cook and stir 1 minute, then whisk in 1 cup of milk until smooth. Pour in remaining milk and whisk again. Bring the sauce just to a simmer.
  4. Stir in nutmeg, Worcestershire sauce, and salt. Simmer on medium-low heat until thickened, about 8 minutes, stirring often. Turn heat off, then add 2 1/4 cups of cheese. Stir until melted and combined. Add Dijon mustard.
  5. Transfer the macaroni into a large bowl, then pour in the cheese sauce. Stir to combine. Set aside.
  6. To prepare lobster, cut a slit in the underside of the tail and remove the meat. Chop the lobster tail meat into, bite sized pieces. Add salt to the chopped lobster. Toss to coat evenly.
  7. Add the butter, olive oil and dried parsley to a medium-high heat sauté pan.
  8. Add the lobster to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes. It will be slightly undercooked.
  9. Transfer lobster to the bowl of mac & cheese and stir to combine. Divide the mixture into 6 individual ramekins.
  10. Mix panko bread crumbs and 1 tbsp melted butter in a small bowl, and sprinkle the crumbs on top of macaroni and cheese. Top with the remaining 3/4 cup cheese.
  11. Bake in oven until bread crumbs and cheese topping are golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove and serve hot.

Source: Delicious Magazine

New Study Proves Correlation Between Weight Loss and Hot Flash Reduction

Now women have yet one more incentive to lose weight as a new study has shown evidence that behavioral weight loss can help manage menopausal hot flashes.

The pilot study, which was published online last month in Menopause, the journal of The North American Menopause Society (NAMS), consisted of 40 overweight or obese white and African-American women with hot flashes, which are the most prevalent symptom of menopause. In fact, more than 70% of women report hot flashes during the menopausal transition, with many of these women reporting frequent or severe hot flashes. Since women with hot flashes are at greater risk for poor quality of life, sleep
problems and a depressed mood, interest in identifying methods for managing hot flashes is growing. In addition, newer data indicate that hot flashes are typically persistent, lasting an average of nine years or more.

For purposes of the pilot clinical trial, hot flashes were assessed before and after intervention via physiologic monitoring, diary and questionnaire. The study confirmed a significant correlation between weight loss and hot flashes. Furthermore, the degree of weight loss correlated with the degree of reduction in hot flashes.

Although newer data has suggested a positive relationship between hot flashes and the percentage of fat in a woman’s body, no studies, to date, had been specifically designed to test whether weight loss reduces hot flashes. The authors of this pilot study concluded that, while the results were encouraging in proving the benefits of weight reduction in the management of menopausal hot flashes, more than anything, the findings indicate the importance of conducting a larger study.

“This is encouraging news for women looking for relief for this bothersome midlife symptom,” says NAMS Executive Director Margery Gass, MD. “Not only might behavior weight loss provide a safe, effective remedy for many women, but it also encourages a health-promoting behavior. Since many of the women in this pilot study indicated their primary motivator for losing weight was hot flash reduction, we know that this could be a strong incentive for women to engage in a healthier lifestyle which provides
numerous other health benefits beyond hot flash management.”

Source: The North American Menopause Society

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