Video: Are Organic Foods Really Healthier?

It’s widely believed that organic foods are more nutritious and safer than non-organic foods, even though the evidence is far from clear. Food certified as organic sometimes costs twice as much as conventional products. Bloomberg QuickTake explains why the premium prices may not be buying everything that’s promised.

Watch video at Bloomberg (2:34 minutes) . . . . .

French-style Veal Chop with Minced Meat


2 double veal chops
6 tbsp unsalted butter
3/4 cup dried white bread crumbs, soaked in 2 tbsp cream until soft
all-purpose flour
bread crumbs
2 free-range eggs
vegetable oil (enough to shallow-fry)
black pepper


  1. Take the meat off the chops and set the bones aside. Trim the meat and remove any sinew, then mince the meat with the butter and mix in the softened bread crumbs. Season the mixture well, then shape it along each chop bone to reform the shape. Place the chops in the fridge to set.
  2. Spread the flour and bread crumbs on separate plates and whisk the eggs in a bowl.
  3. Dust the chops with flour first, then dip them into the egg, and lastly coat with bread crumbs. Place the chops in the fridge again to chill and set before frying — don’t be tempted to skip this step, as it is important that the chops be firm before frying.
  4. Heat enough vegetable oil in a frying pan for shallow-frying. Add the chops and gently brown them all over. Turn them carefully so that all of the crumb coating is beautifully golden — you’ll need to hold each chop with tongs to brown the edges.
  5. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°F. Place the browned chops in the oven until the meat is cooked but still pink, about 15 minutes. Slice each chop in half and serve.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: The French Kitchen

In Pictures: Sunday Lunches of Restaurants around Ginza, Japan

The Golden Rules of Grilling


Dan Gentile wrote . . . . . . .

Backyard cooks often stumble onto these lessons via trial and error, but to speed along the learning, we asked grill-obsessed chefs for rules that they always follow. Now go and do unto thy burgers as you’d have them do unto you.

Fear neither salt nor fat

“Several days prior to grilling any beef, I’ll salt it and put it on a drying rack in the fridge for at least 24 hours. This draws the moisture out and really aids in creating a great crust. Then I’ll brush the meat with melted tallow. Using rendered beef fat in place of butter makes a ton of sense, and it’s cheap and easy to get from any butcher or grocer.” — Trey Bell, LaRue Elm, (Greensboro, North Carolina)

Tread lightly with sauce

“Save the sauce! Barbecue sauce is best served on the side as a condiment. If you put it on the meat over a hot fire it’ll burn easily, and nobody likes that.” — Ray Lampe, aka Dr. BBQ (Saint Petersburg, Florida)

Don’t covet thy neighbor’s grill

“Of all the methods of cooking, grilling is easily the one with the most back-seat drivers. Just like too many cooks in the kitchen, too many bros around a fire can be the undoing of your ember-kissed edibles. Not much is worse than trying to get in the zone, only to have Biff from accounting instruct you on the proper methods of burger-flipping. My line is this: ‘I’ll handle this. That way it’s only my fault if it sucks.’ You have to take control! Get a wing-person to distract gawkers and back-seat grillers away from your food foundry. Have the wing-person deliver the toasty treats to a place away from the grill. I’m not saying you have to be antisocial. Once the cooking is done, bask in the praises of those you have fed.” — Justin Warner, author of The Laws of Cooking: And How to Break Them, host of Chef Shock (Brooklyn, New York)

Stay away from lighter fluid, unless you like the taste

“Chimney starters are always preferred over lighter fluid — they make for a cleaner cook.” – Takuya “Tako” Matsumoto, Kemuri Tatsu-ya, (Austin, Texas)

Indirect heat is thy friend

“I like to put all the coals on one side of the grill. Skin-on chicken thighs are my favorite, and I like to roast them on the complete opposite side of the grill where there’s no flame. The indirect heat slow roasts them and makes the skin really crispy.” — Chris Shepherd, chef/owner of Underbelly, One Fifth, Hay Merchant (Houston, Texas)

Don’t leave meat in the cold

“Always take your protein out of the refrigerator a couple hours before grilling to allow it to come to room temperature. A room-temperature piece of meat cooks a lot more evenly than something right out of the refrigerator.” — Mark Dommen, One Market Restaurant (San Francisco, California)

Do not gamble with germs

“Wrap your platter with plastic wrap before taking raw meat out to the grill. After the meat is on the grill, you can remove and discard the plastic wrap. That way, you can use the same platter for serving the cooked meat. And you don’t need to wash your tongs: If they touch the raw burger, it’s OK — the heat of the burger sterilizes the tongs.” — Steven Raichlen, author and TV host of Project Smoke (Chappaquiddick Island, Massachusetts)

Rotate your meat to make a feast for the mouth and the eyes

“To achieve perfect grill marks, do a quarter turn on your patty at the two-minute mark, flip it over after four minutes, then at the six-minute mark do another quarter turn and add any topping such as cheese or caramelized onions. Finally at eight minutes, remove from the grill and enjoy.” — Steven Banbury, HopDoddy Burger Bar (Austin, Texas)

Don’t block the spatchcock

“At Flip Bird, the golden rule is to first spatchcock the bird. By removing the backbone, butterflying, and flattening the chicken, the meat will cook faster and both the breast and the leg finish at the same time while remaining moist and flavorful.” — John Stage, Dinosaur Bar-B-Que and Flip Bird (multiple locations throughout New York)

Have patience with coals

“Make sure the coals are cooked down to the white ash, otherwise the charcoal flavor is too pronounced. I like when it’s still very hot, but has a beautiful amber glow with white ash. The perfect temperature.” — David Myers, Gypsy Chef at Salt Water Kitchen, Adrift, and more (Los Angeles, California)

Fear not other cultures

“A few of my favorite ingredients to grill with are lemongrass and fish sauce. Lemongrass is a beautiful aromatic to add brightness to a dish without the introduction of acid. When acid is present, it usually turns bitter when exposed to an open flame. Lemongrass doesn’t do that, instead it becomes brighter as the flavor is extracted over heat. Fish sauce is used as a complex salt and seasoning in Southeast Asia. It’s better than salt because when you use fish sauce you’re not just adding sodium, but also giving the dish more umami.” — Tu David Phu, chef behind An: Vietnamese Dining Experience (San Francisco, CA)

Source: Thrillist

Laser Therapy Shows Promise Against Eye ‘Floaters’

A laser treatment can reduce spots in people’s vision known as “floaters,” a new study finds.

“Floaters often arise as the vitreous — a gel-like substance that fills the eye — contracts and pulls away from the back of the eye,” explained ophthalmologist Dr. Naomi Goldberg, who reviewed the new research. She works at the Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat Hospital in New York City.

Floaters become more common with age, and although some people simply get used to them, others are bothered by them or their vision is impaired.

The new research was led by Dr. Chirag Shah and Dr. Jeffrey Heier of Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston. They explained that, currently, there are three management options for floaters: patient education and observation; surgery; and a laser procedure known as YAG vitreolysis.

However, Shah and Heier said there are few published studies on the laser treatment’s effectiveness in treating floaters.

The new study involved 52 patients with floaters who received one session of either the YAG laser treatment or a “sham” placebo laser treatment.

Six months after treatment, 54 percent of patients in the YAG group reported significantly greater improvement in floater-related visual disturbances, compared with only 9 percent of those in the placebo group.

Nineteen patients (53 percent) in the YAG group reported significantly or completely improved symptoms, compared with none of the patients in the placebo group, the researchers added.

The patients in the YAG group also had improvements in several other measures, including general vision and independence, compared with those in the placebo group, the findings showed.

There were no differences between the two groups in harmful side effects, according to the study, which was published July 20 in JAMA Ophthalmology.

A limitation of the study was its small size and short follow-up period, the researchers said. “Greater confidence in these outcomes may result from larger confirmatory studies of longer duration,” the study authors wrote.

For her part, Goldberg said that although “there was significant improvement in patients’ symptoms following treatment, and no significant complication was seen,” these findings are early and “it is difficult to predict the long-term safety of this laser procedure.”

Source: HealthDay

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