Valentine’s Day Sweet Collection 2020 of Isetan Shinjuku, Japan

Chocolate and Cherry Mousse


Cherry Mousse
12 oz pitted cherries, fresh or canned
1-1/2 tsp gelatin powder
2-1/2 tblsp cold water
1/4 cup sugar
2 eggs, separated
2/3 cup heavy cream

Chocolate Mousse

6 oz semi-sweet chocolate, chopped or grated
2 tsp instant coffee
1 tblsp water
4 eggs, separated
2/3 cup heavy cream

To Decorate

2/3 cup whipped cream
a few whole cherries


  1. Rub the cherries through a sieve, or puree them in a blender or food processor.
  2. Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water and leave in a basin to soften for a few minutes. Dissolve the gelatin over a pan of simmering water. Remove from the heat and cool.
  3. Beat the sugar and egg yolks together until thick and creamy and then beat in the gelatin.
  4. Stir in the cherry puree and mix well.
  5. Beat the egg whites in a dry bowl until stiff but not dry.
  6. Whip the cream lightly until it holds its shape and then fold the cream gently into the cherry mixture.
  7. Fold the egg whites into the cherry mixture lightly but thoroughly. Pour into 6 individual serving dishes and chill for 30 minutes.
  8. For the chocolate mousse: melt the chocolate with the coffee and the water. Remove from the heat and beat in the egg yolks.
  9. Whip the cream lightly until it holds its shape, then beat the egg whites in a separate bowl until stiff but not dry.
  10. Fold the cream into the chocolate mixture and then the egg whites.

  11. Pour the chocolate mousse over the chilled cherry mousse and chill for at least an hour.
  12. Decorate with whipped cream and cherries before serving.

Makes 6 servings.

Source: Chocolate Cooking

In Pictures: Hand-made Chocolate

Why Some High-Fiber Diets Cause Gas — And What to Do About It

If you want to reduce bloating when eating a high-fiber diet, try making it carbohydrate-rich rather than protein-rich, new study findings suggest.

Bloating is a common side effect that discourages many people from adopting a high-fiber diet.

For the study, researchers analyzed data from a clinical trial involving 164 participants who followed heart-healthy, high-fiber diets. The participants were about 40% more likely to report bloating while following diets rich in plant proteins than on carbohydrate-rich regimens.

The findings were recently published online in the journal Clinical and Translational Gastroenterology.

High-fiber diets are believed to cause bloating by increasing certain populations of healthy, fiber-digesting gut bacteria. They produce gas as a byproduct. These findings suggest that carbs and proteins change the gut bacteria population (microbiome).

“It’s possible that in this study, the protein-rich version of the diet caused more bloating because it caused more of a healthy shift in the composition of the microbiome,” said study co-senior author Noel Mueller. He’s an assistant professor of epidemiology at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, in Baltimore.

“Notably, the protein in these diets was mostly from vegetable sources, such as beans, legumes and nuts,” he added.

The findings suggest that substituting high-quality carbs — such as whole grains — for proteins might reduce bloating and make high-fiber diets more tolerable.

However, substituting proteins for carbohydrates might make such diets less healthy, the researchers noted in a Hopkins news release.

“Bloating may be just a consequence of a healthy shift in the microbiome, so that if somebody is able to put up with the bloating caused by a high-protein, high-fiber diet, they may ultimately benefit more in other health measures,” Mueller said.

Source: HealthDay

Scientists Find New Ways to Prevent Skin Scarring

A new study in Burns & Trauma, published by Oxford University Press, reveals promising new strategies to prevent skin scarring after injuries.

While scars are common when wounds heal, hypertrophic scarring is a skin condition characterized by deposits of excessive amounts of collagen. This results in a thick and often raised scar. The underlying mechanisms of hypertrophic scar development are poorly understood, however. The Burns & Trauma paper reviewed strategies for treating hypertrophic scars.

Skin wound healing is a process that consists of three phases: inflammation, proliferation, and regeneration. Hypertrophic scar formation can occur as a result of an abnormality in these processes. The frequency of such scarring ranges from 40% to 94% following surgery and from 30% to 91% following a burn injury. In poorer countries, the incidence rate is greater reflecting the high rate of burn injuries.

Major risk factors for hypertrophic scar formation include gender, age, genetic predisposition, wound size and depth, anatomical site, and mechanical tension on the wound. Such scarring hinders normal function, and obviously results serious physical, psychological, and aesthetic problems for patients.

It is widely accepted that the time to complete wound healing is the most important factor to predict the development of hypertrophic scars. Only one-third of wounds developed scarring tissue if healing occurred between 14 and 21 days. Some 78% of the sites resulted in serious scarring if the wound healed after 21 days.

The established therapies for preventing serious skin scarring include pressure therapy, which has long been considered the mainstay non-invasive treatment for hypertrophic scarring. It is widely used worldwide and its effectiveness has been established. It’s likely more effective suggested that it is more effective if pressure therapy is performed within two months after the initial injury.

Other interventions include silicone, steroids, and laser therapy. While the effectiveness of silicone therapy has not been completely determined, the topical administration of steroids for burn injuries has been generally used and reported to be effective. There is consistent evidence that early laser intervention for the prevention would be beneficial in both the speed of scar reduction and the efficacy of therapeutic response.

Resection (cutting out the tissue) and radiation can often be used in addition to the primary therapies. Surgical approaches do, however, vary with the type of scar. Researchers involved with this paper argue that we need long term results in order to make decisions about using resection or radiation as a medical intervention.

The drug botulinum toxin A (btxA) is widely used for cosmetic purposes, as well as treating headaches and other pain. It is also often used to treat hypertrophic scars. Researchers involved in this paper emphasize that while btxA appears to have some positive effect on scar prevention, researchers still haven’t decided on the optimal concentration of the drug to treat scarring. It may depend on the size or severity of the wound. They conclude the drug is promising and worth investigating further.

Future management possibilities for hypertrophic scar therapy include anti-angiogenesis therapy, which inhibits the development of new blood vessels, fat grafting, and stem cell therapy. There are several experimental investigations on the effectiveness such therapies to reduce abnormal tissue formation.

Source: Science Daily

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