Elevate Difference

Reviews tagged food

Organic Dark Chocolates

If you have a vice, you might as well indulge it responsibly. Shaman Chocolates' profits propagate Huichol communities and culture. Descendents of the Aztec, the Huichol population is approximately 18,000. They reside in the sierra of Jalisco and Nayarit, and their traditions persist despite the encroachment that ensued with the arrival of the conquistadors. Huichol ceremonies use peyote, and the people are known for vivid depictions of themes from nature utilizing beads and yarn.

Vegan Soul Kitchen: Fresh, Healthy, and Creative African-American Cuisine

Whether you're rebuilding yourself or just doing daily maintenance, healthy food is a necessity for bringing the body back and keeping it going. Now that I can't go to Whole Foods, it's time to get creative with the selection from produce stands and farmer's markets. Today I saw a man with a straw cowboy hat selling tomatoes, melons, and sunflowers out of a battered pick-up truck. Chilled soup, sorbet, and an arrangement for the table?

The SimplyRaw Living Foods Detox Manual

Which should I do first, save my butt or save the planet? The SimplyRaw Living Foods Detox Manual contains much useful information, but it appears that any local food aspirations may conflict with many of the program's staples. Some recipes incorporate avocados, bananas, and papayas.

Red Gold Tomato Products

Italian cuisine is my favorite, and I'm not adverse to chili or Mexican dishes either. Therefore, there is always some form of tomato in my pantry. Despite the fact that this fruit—not vegetable—was considered poisonous (due to its membership in the belladonna family) and warnings of reflux, to me, it's a staple. I missed the state fair this year, but apparently Indiana is second in the nation in tomato production—over 10,000 acres of tomato plants blanket the state—so the festival was declared the Year of Tomatoes.

The Naughty Kitchen With Chef Blythe Beck

Oxygen devised a new show from a most novel idea: produce a “food show” as a documentary, or in their terms, as a “docu-series.” The show, The Naughty Kitchen, has the drama of the popular Top Chef without the competition. Instead, it delves into the mania and frenzy of the restaurant business from Chef Blythe Beck’s perspective.

The Cheese Chronicles: A Journey through the Making and Selling of Cheese in America, from Field to Farm to Table

Upon receiving Liz Thorpe’s The Cheese Chronicles, I had to ask myself: Do you really love cheese enough to get through 366 pages of it? The answer, apparently, is yes. Now, I detest the term foodie. My boyfriend teasingly calls me a foodie in his WASP-iest voice. It seems so pretentious, so elitist, so... stupid. I can’t deny, though, my great love and interest in all things food. I love to cook. I read recipe books like novels while curled up in bed.

Ani's Raw Food Desserts: 85 Easy, Delectable Sweets and Treats

Raw food chef Ani Phyo’s latest cookbook is a creative and diverse collection of no-bake dessert recipes. All of her creations are free of wheat, gluten, dairy, and processed sugar, and rely instead on nuts, seeds, fruit, and natural sweeteners like agave nectar and maple syrup.

The Vegetarian Myth: Food, Justice, and Sustainability

When I initially saw the title of this book, my inner scale wanted to weigh its contents against my fifteen year decision to exclude eating anything that had parents. I also presumed the author was one of those pork slinging individuals who just couldn’t cut it as a vegetarian. The good thing about getting older, though, is the wisdom I have acquired in remaining open. Lierre Keith discusses three reasons—moral, political, and nutritional—why most vegetarians choose to adopt a meatless diet, and the misconceived notions that often accompany those reasons.

Julie and Julia

Is it ever too late to follow your bliss? In Julie and Julia, director Nora Ephron seems to be shouting directly into the ears of the audience, “Not on your life!” The film, which is truly Ephron’s masterpiece, is based on two books: writer Julie Powell’s tome of the same name and Julia Child’s memoir My Life in France.

The Girls

The Girls is a modern chick lit version of The Women by Clare Boothe Luce. This book, like that classic play, is made especially interesting because boys are talked about, but not featured as active characters!

Organic Maple Syrup

Perusing vegan cookbooks recently, I've noticed a tendency to recommend maple syrup as a sweetener. Yes, it's sucrose, but perhaps tree juice is ahead of refined cane sugar and the demon corn. And it also has flavor. I cannot abide most artificial flavorings, and although some faux maple comes from the authentic spice fenugreek, there's nothing like the real thing. Coombs Family Farms' maple syrup is very real.

WonderToast Onesies

I originally noticed Ann Woltz's charming illustrations when looking for a birthday gift for a surrogate niece. Odetta is flourishing on the other side of the planet, but no matter where she's planted, I have no doubt she will bloom. And what better food for a flower than knowledge of global cuisine? Even though one may be mashing bananas through its fists, it's never too early to expand an infant's palette. The items available at the WonderToast site provide assistance.

Chipotle Habanero Hot Sauce

“Healthy, wealthy, and wise.” I was hoping to achieve three out of three, but it now appears that I'd be lucky to hit one. However, you want to make a choice that is smart, economical, and health-conscious, it is time to consider the lowly legume.  Everyone's on the lookout for cheap protein. Some favor black beans—my favorite version is a Cuban-style soup garnished with diced red onions and sour cream. Michael's Uptown Café of Bloomington, Indiana always got the cumin just right.

Rich Rainforest Dark Gourmet Fudge Bar

There are many definitions of 'fudge.' The first recorded use of it as a name for a confection made of sugar, butter, milk, chocolate, and sometimes nuts is from 1895. Some speculate that cooking it was an illicit practice on college campuses, and this violation of the rules called its production to be called 'fudging,' although this is likely apocryphal. Other meanings of 'fudge' include: nonsense or humbug; to cheat or exaggerate; to avoid coming to grips with.

Organic Original Rice Nectar

A gift box arrived at my home several weeks ago, origin unknown until my partner came staggering through the door, trying to balance the behemoth shipment he’d fetched from the post office. “It’s from Jaimie and Sabrina!” My kind, thoughtful acupuncturist and psychiatrist back in Boston—who share an office space, an affinity for holistic treatment, and unending support for my international move—had sent a care package after receiving a card from us.

Thursday Night Supper Club and Urban Sustainable Living (3/26/2009)

If you are concerned with economy, food security, and health, a vegetable garden makes perfect sense. The first family's organic plot is underway, and instead of being daunted by some potential setbacks (the condition of urban soil, limited space, a non-existent budget), I have decided to be inspired by their example and undertake an attempt to grow my own produce. Therefore, I was delighted when the Backstory Cafe offered a presentation on urban gardening.

Two Tier Action Pack

Everyone wants to avoid waste. And—yes, the pun is the lowest form—everyone wants to avoid waist. An effective way to do both is to eat only one-half the entrée at a restaurant whenever you eat out. Seeing that the American conception of a "portion" is generally equivalent to a meal in other nations, this is not a threat to the health of the standard-issue eater in the U.S.A. However, generating extra landfill waste through requesting carry-out packaging could be construed a threat to the planet. Fear not: no longer will you be able to use Styrofoam avoidance as an excuse to clean your plate.

Jane Goodall Bars

Monkeys have been in the news lately. Here's my favorite monkey story: once a researcher was going to test the intelligence of a chimpanzee by putting the subject in an empty room with assorted boxes in a pile and a banana hanging from the ceiling by a string. The scientist was about to retreat to an observation space and watch through the mirror in order to determine how long it took his subject to stack the boxes and take the food.

It Doesn’t Count If… It’s the Last One: And 204 More Reasons Why You Can Eat That

Fat is not just a feminist issue; it’s everyone’s concern. We’re in an age where good health equals happiness—not a bad philosophy, but for our society's increasing problem with the relationship we have with our food. What we consider to be fat is often misguided; bodies come in all shapes and sizes. Yet, people go on unnecessary diets and eating obsessions to attain that "perfect" Western body sold to us by the higher powers. The word diet itself has negative connotations: to not eat, to lose weight, to lose something of the self.

Bitchin' Bodies: Young Women Talk About Body Dissatisfaction

Another day, another book exploring women and their bodies is published. The media is saturated with literature surrounding the female figure—just take a look inside any Barnes and Noble and prepare to be overwhelmed. And sure, we've read them all, so what could possibly be so appealing about Bitchin' Bodies? How can an author tread ground that is already so well-worn? Is this book even worth bothering with?


I am currently reading, belatedly, Michael Pollan's The Botany of Desire, and enjoying it very much. The book was inspirational to my book group, a circle of commendable females who have been meeting to discuss fiction, non-fiction, biographies, theory and plays for over a decade. At one point we were called 'The Menstrual Hut'—a logical choice for a hen party that gathers once a month—but some may have disavowed the name.

Swap n' Stores: We Must Cultivate

A 'swap n' store' is an opportunity for dedicated gardeners to exchange from their seedstock, providing not only for their lots and pantries, but also for the genetic strength and proliferation of the plants. My interest in gardening has been piqued not only by health and global fiscal conflagration, but also because I finally got around to reading Michael Pollan's The Botany of Desire.

It's Not About Food: End Your Obsession with Food and Weight

The new year is upon us, and it’s not just because George W. Bush has finally left the White House. Whenever we decide to turn on our televisions, the Resolutions Monster is there. It appears as a perky model that lost fifty pounds after some fad diet. We look at our own bodies in disgust, poking at the extra pounds of flesh formed after gorging extra slices of pumpkin pie. Summer suddenly creeps up on us like our monthly cycles and those dreams of wearing a bikini are shattered.  There aren’t many options in combating the Resolutions Monster.

O, The Oprah Magazine Cookbook

Cooking with O, The Oprah Magazine Cookbook is an exploration of taste. The cookbook is arranged by the type of food—salads and appetizers, drinks, desserts, meats, vegetables—and the recipes come from a series of chefs who have contributed their favorites. Colorful photos and commentary from the chefs accompany the recipes. Unlike other cookbooks, there is no clear theme here.


Chocolate by Paule Cuvetier is a two-volume set that comes in the matching case. The set includes The History of Chocolate and The Taste of Chocolate.

Starved for Science: How Biotechnology Is Being Kept Out of Africa

As a mom who does what I can to buy organic food for my family, I completely understand the general distaste most of us have for genetically modified (GM) foods. The very thought of vegetables altered by scientists in labs seems creepy and somehow inherently wrong, doesn’t it?

The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food

It's rare that I find myself so drawn in by a book that it puts a smile on my face. The Fortune Cookie Chronicles did that and more. At its most basic, this book is about Chinese food in the United States - where it came from, its evolution, and the influence it has had on American dining.

Eat Out, Eat Right: The Guide to Healthier Restaurant Eating

Hope Warshaw is on a mission; she wants to help health conscious diners navigate their way through the minefield that is dining out in the United States. As Warshaw points out in her book, more Americans eat out than ever before—an average of five meals a week—for a variety of sociological and economic reasons. Because we’re spending less time eating at home, we also have less control over the food we eat.

Steamed: A Gourmet Girl Mystery

Steamed is a beach-book that should have been broadcasted—Law and Order _meets _The Naked Chef. This book is formulaic TV on paper, addictive with a pinch of sex appeal. Despite being a truly page-turning story, Steamed can be described in many ways, but does very little with the power of literary description, character and plot development, or genre. Jessica Conant-Park and Susan Conant, a mother-daughter team, get together to write what is the younger's first book. (Susan is the writer of the Dog Lover's Mysteries and Cat Lover's Mysteries).

Comfort Food for Breakups: The Memoir of a Hungry Girl

“Soup can sometimes take the place of language...” Marusya Bociurkiw writes in Comfort Food for Breakups, and as the aroma of my mother’s broth, sipped to ease sickness, floods my tongue, I too hunger for my mother’s absent touch, for my young daughter knees, for my queer body. Born in Canada to Ukrainian exiles, Bociurkiw weaves stories interspersed with recipes, travels, and tales of other refugees.