Entries in Food (28)


USDA: Possible to Feed Family of Four for Less Than $300 a Week

iStockphoto(NEW YORK) -- How much does it cost to feed a family of four -- and make sure that everyone is eating healthy food? Less than you might think, according to a new report from the US Department of Agriculture.

The USDA’s new program, My Healthy Plate, gives new guidelines for guidelines for eating fruits, vegetables, grains and proteins.  Though some were wary of the cost of the healthier food recommended by the USDA, it turns out that it’s possible to feed a family of four healthy meals for a week for between $149 and $289 a week.

Feeding a family on this budget involves putting in a little more effort when shopping. The USDA says shoppers should look for sales, avoid buying pre-cut vegetables, and stay away from pricier cuts of meat.

Frugal diners should also stay in for dinner instead of going out to eat, which is typically far more expensive than a well-planned home cooked meal.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Beware the 'Amish-Made' Label

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- From food to furniture to clothing, more and more goods are showing up in stores with an Amish label attached to their name. The problem: Most of these goods are not Amish and are, in reality, being created without the input or knowledge of the Amish people.

“This is certainly nothing new,” said Brad Igou, president of the Amish Experience, which provides tours of legitimately Amish owned and  operated businesses in Bird-in-Hand, Pa.

“The word Amish implies honesty, integrity and well-made durable goods,” he added as explanation for the popularity of the term. “People who don’t do their homework might be buying things that are not Amish-made.”

The term “Amish Country” is popular among companies that are not selling the genuine article because it refers to a geographical location rather than to the people themselves, warns

The website quoted one Amish entrepreneur as saying, “I see this in the food industry.  There’s quite a few organizations here locally that will sell using ‘Amish.’  And what they’re trying to do is create the perception that it does come from Amish producers, when it doesn’t.  They don’t explicitly say so, they just say, ‘Amish Country’ this, ‘Amish Country’ that. … ‘Amish’ is big, ‘Country’ is small.  So, the customer that buys this, his perception … is this comes from an Amish farm or an Amish producer.”

Aside from watching it being made or knowing the producer, there’s no way to know for sure. One of the best signs, however, is also the most counterintuitive.

“Most of the time,” Igou said, “Amish do not use the term Amish in the name of their business.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Fish Fraud: Is Your Snapper Really Tilapia?

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Take a close look at that fish you buy from the grocery store or the sushi you order from a restaurant. It might not be what you think it is.

The conservation group Oceana recently sampled 96 supermarkets, restaurants, and sushi venues in South Florida and found that 31 percent of the time, the fish you order or buy is mislabeled. For instance, when you order or buy snapper, you'll sometimes get tilapia because it’s a cheaper variety.

“Most of our mislabeling was, I would presume for economic reasons, where you would get a farmed product being sold as a wild species,” said Oceana's Kimberly Warner.

One of the worst problems, she says, was with white tuna; it was mislabeled at every single one of the sushi restaurants researchers looked at -- and the fish that was on the plate instead, it turns out, can make you sick.

“Everything that was labeled white tuna was actually this escolar species, and it's a fish that the FDA warns people not to eat because of this naturally occurring toxin that it has,” Warner said.


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She advises consumers to ask where the fish they're buying was caught, how it was caught, and what kind it is. And just like when it comes to the rest of our food, many believe that more regulation is needed.

“Ultimately, the solution is going to be a full traceability system for our seafood,” Warner said. “Right now, it's really hard to tell where on this very murky supply chain the fish fraud is occurring.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Bacon Fans, Rejoice: Calif. Chain Now Serving 100% Bacon Burger

Slater’s 50/50(LOS ANGELES) -- Slater’s 50/50, a California chain made famous for its half-bacon, half-beef burger, has gone bacon-crazy. The ‘Merica, the restaurant’s July burger of the month, is a 100 percent ground bacon burger topped with more bacon, a sunny-side-up egg, bacon island dressing and bacon cheddar cheese.

“The concept for Slater’s 50/50 Burgers by Design came out of a dare at a Charger’s tailgate party between owner Scott Slater and some of his San Diego State University buddies. Could a 100 percent ground bacon burger work? After some tweaking and perfecting (and a few small grease fires), the answer was yes,” a release from the restaurant said.

The response to the burger on Facebook has been overwhelming, with fans commenting, “The gods have answered our prayers!” and “Must have one soon!!!”

The burger costs $10.95 and is available until the end of July.  Slater’s 50/50 has three locations in Southern California.

Not sure what to order with your bacon burger?  The restaurant also serves a bacon Bloody Mary made with bacon-infused vodka, bacon salt and garnished with a slab of bacon.  For dessert, a warm chocolate and chopped bacon brownie can complete the meal.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


New Beer Includes Bits of Gold

Zoonar/Thinkstock(OSTRAVA, Czech Republic) -- This isn’t your average tailgating beer.  A brewery in the Czech Republic has released a gold-flecked lager that’s fit for a king.

The beer, packaged in a champagne bottle, contains 0.018 grams of gold leaf.  It is called “Re” after the Egyptian sun god and took 18 months to develop.

“Gold is an inert metallic element so it doesn’t taste like anything,” said Marek Pieton, Chief Brewer, in a video by Diagonal View. “But it has a very impressive effect and it also may have a good effect on health later.”

Thirsting for the taste of gold?  The brewery has only produced 500 bottles of the gold-flecked drink. The price of the product was not disclosed.

“This product is not designed for a wider market.  It is produced for special clients upon request.  These beers go through a highly rigorous process before distribution and we produce them only if customers order them,” said Pieton.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


California Bidding Au Revoir to Foie Gras

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) -- The French delicacy known as foie gras will disappear off California menus and plates Sunday.  Restaurants caught serving the buttery treat can be fined up to $1,000.

Made from the fattened livers of ducks and geese, foie gras is primarily produced in France.  The birds are force-fed corn through a process called gavage and then slaughtered for their organs.

Chef Wolfgang Puck sent a letter to 5,000 California restaurants in May to show his support for the law, the only state to do so.  The city of Chicago banned foie gras in 2006, only to reverse the decision two years later.

“Cramming pipes down ducks’ throats is both physically painful and psychologically terrifying for these poor ducks,” Bruce Friedrich, Farm Sanctuary senior director, said on the ASPCA website.

Chefs and foie lovers have been bulking up on the delicacy before the looming end date, buying large quantities of the product as well as hosting dinners based on the treat.

The industry had almost eight years to work on keeping its foie.  Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill in 2004 that granted farmers a grace period to find alternative ways to produce it.

With no other humane methods found, the ban stands to begin Sunday.  Most of the small farms and shops that the ban affects have already moved out of the state.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Subway Tests New Vegan Sandwiches

Courtesy Compassion Over Killing(NEW YORK) -- Subway has expanded its menu beyond the world of carnivores and vegetarians.  The company announced this week that it will begin offering three vegan sandwiches at locations in Maryland, Washington D.C. and Virginia.

The sandwiches come in Sweet Riblet, Malibu Greek and Italian Black Bean varieties.  They can be served on one of the five vegan breads offered at the restaurant: Roasted Garlic, Sourdough, Light Wheat English Muffin, Hearty Italian and Hearty Italian White.

Tempted to try one?  The foot-long sandwiches cost $7.00 and the 6-inch costs $4.50.

This isn’t the first time the company has had vegan options. “Totally Vegged” vegan patties were offered at locations in Canada last summer.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Pizza Vending Machine Coming Soon to United States

Let's Pizza(NEW YORK) -- Vending machines aren't just for a bag of chips and soda anymore. A vending machine that makes fresh pizza to order will debut in the U.S. this year after experiencing popularity in Europe.

The Amsterdam-based company A1 Concepts began distributing the machine, created by Italian Claudio Torghel, in Europe three years ago.

For $5.97, the vending machine serves up a 10.5-inch pizza with a choice of margherita, pepperoni, ham or bacon.  The dough is made fresh, assembled per order and boxed in about 2 1/2 minutes.  Infrared ovens allow the pizza to cook quickly, CEO Ronald Rammers told Pizza Marketplace.  

"Each pizza machine is connected to the Internet to control stock. If necessary, besides the standard services, the operator will (re-stock). Each pizza machine contains ingredients for 200 pizzas," said Rammers.

A separate slot in the machine dispenses a pizza cutter and napkins.  

How much will a vending machine pizza set you back? One pizza clocks in around 676 calories and 22.6 grams of fat.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Taco Bell Goes Upscale With New Menu

Joe Raedle/Getty Images(MIAMI) -- Who says fast food can’t have a touch of fine dining?  Taco Bell announced plans this week for a new upscale menu, in an attempt to compete with popular restaurant chain Chipotle.

Miami chef Lorena Garcia, an upcoming Top Chef Masters competitor, began collaborating on the menu with Taco Bell in October in 2010.

“They have a passionate fan base that loves the great taste of the classic menu items – and they don’t want to change that. They were looking to keep these menu items and expand their food to offer new flavors with great taste,” said Garcia in a statement.

Whole black beans, cilantro rice, citrus marinated chicken, Haas avocado guacamole and corn salsa are some of the new items that will be added to the menu.

The restaurant is known for less health-conscious late-night dining items like cheese roll-ups, volcano tacos and large nachos.  Their newest item, Doritos Los Tacos, sold over 100 million in past 10 weeks.

Taco Bell, which is comprised of over 5,600 restaurants, will roll out the new menu July 5 at a suggested $5 or less per item.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Pizza Hut Tries to Bite into Subway’s Sales

Image credit: Pizza Hut(NEW YORK) -- It’s a battle of sandwich versus sandwich.  Pizza Hut is taking on Subway in its marketing campaign promoting the launch of the new P’zolo sandwich.

With advertising that says “See ya subs” on Chicago subway trains covered in P’zolo advertising, the Pizza Hut chain isn’t being discreet.  The New York Times reported other lines that said, “Say so long to the footlong” and “More bang for your 5 bucks.”

The P’zolo sandwich comes in Meat Trio, Buffalo Chicken or Italian Steak options with ranch or marinara dipping sauce.  Its pricing rivals the Subway sandwich: $3 per sandwich or 2 for $5.  Subway is known for its $5 footlong sandwich.

This isn’t Pizza Hut’s first foray in the sandwich market.  It sold the P’zone, a pizza-flavored calzone, as its first attempt to lure sandwich shoppers.

How many calories will a P’zolo cost you? Pizza Hut has yet to post the nutritional content of the sandwich.  Subways range from 300 to 500 calories for their footlongs.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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