Creating An Oasis In A Southern ‘food Desert’

Robin Emmons estimates that her fruits and vegetables are about half the price of organic produce sold in stores.

Served on a smoked willow branch and torched to order, it’s got the nostalgia-inducing superpower of Proust’s madeleine, conjuring up lost feelings of childhood summer camping trips for anyone hardy enough to brave the bakery’s long line. Ramen Burger Ramen burgersramen noodles grilled to bun-like perfection and then filled with typical accompaniments like fish cake and porkhave long been street foods in parts of Japan. But it took the vision of Japanese-American ramen aficionado Keizo Shimamoto to pair the crispy-noodle-bun concept with a beef patty, a soy-based sauce, and plenty of scallions, and elevate it to food-fad fave. Currently only available in limited quantities at the Saturday Smorgasburg market in Brooklyn, Shimamoto recently told that he’d like to eventually open restaurants on both the West and East coasts. Japadog Japadog first emerged as a food fad during the Vancouver Olympics, when the food cart won over athletes, spectators, and celebrities willing to wait in long lines for its Japanese-style franks. Since then, Japadog has maintained cult status by growing slowly and maintaining its commitment to quality dogs and bold Asian-inspired flavor combinations. Think Kobe beef, grated daikon radish, bonito flakes, and ume (plum) sauce. And with veggie sausage and a deep-fried bun filled with ice cream on the menu, Japadog is playing to all tastes. With three food carts, a trailer, and a shopfront in Vancouver, its heart is still squarely in the Canadian city. But last year, Japadog opened a location in hot-dog-capital New York City. Bantam Bagels The idea for Bantamsmini bagel balls that are filled instead of toppedcame to its originator in a dream.

Food stamp fight on deck in the House

The average household receiving benefits in 2010 had annual income of $8,800. The Fox News-promoted poster boy for abuse, California surfer dude Jason Greenslate , using his $200 in monthly benefits to gorge on lobster and sushi, is infuriating, but he is hardly typical. More than 80 percent of food-stamp households with an able-bodied adult worked in the year before or after receiving benefits. Imaginary platoons of Greenslates are behind the latest Republican proposal. The biggest, and benign-sounding, change would buttress existing requirements that limit able-bodied adults without children to three months of benefits out of every three years, unless they are working 20 hours per week or participating in a job-training or workfare program. The theory makes sense as with welfare reform, individuals who are able to work and simply choose not to do so, so-called ABAWDs (Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents) should not be able to simply sit back and collect benefits. No more Greenslates! Under existing law, however, states have the flexibility to request waivers from the strict three-month limit during times of high unemployment. In the current downturn, nearly every state has obtained such a waiver. The proposal being floated by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) would eliminate the waivers, except for a sliver of the population. No work, no food stamps even if there are no jobs. This cruel change is aimed at the most desperate of populations, childless adults ineligible for most other federal income-assistance programs. Their average income is a paltry 22 percent of the poverty level, about $2,500.

One-third of food wasted worldwide, U.N. says

Invention targets germs on planes

says Comments 1 A U.N. Food and Agricultural Organization report released Wednesday said one-third of all food produced in the world gets wasted, amounting to an annual loss of $750 billion. Above, discarded bread sits along a river in Ahmadabad, India. (Ajit Solanki / Associated Press / June 5, 2013) Also By Ricardo Lopez September 11, 2013, 8:50 a.m. The world throws away one-third of food produced yearly, making food waste the third-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions behind those produced by the U.S. and China, according to a U.N. report released Wednesday. The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization study found 1.3 billion tons of food is wasted every year, contributing to economic losses that total $750 billion yearly. The focus of Wednesday’s report, however, was to examine the environmental impacts of food waste. To that end, the U.N.


Emmons and her volunteers distribute recipe cards, too, and urge customers to attend the group’s free cooking demonstrations and canning classes. It’s all part of their mission to help people take control over what they are eating and improve their health. And customers seem hungry for all that Emmons and her group are offering. “We’ve been really, really thrilled about the response from the community,” Emmons said. “Even as early as January of this year, they were calling, asking, ‘When are you coming back out?’ ” Brandy Bolin says she was a junk-food junkie for much of her life, until she was diagnosed with diabetes six months ago. She immediately vowed to make eating healthy a priority for herself and her 11-year-old daughter. But because she is unemployed, waiting for her disability to come through, it hasn’t always been easy. “We try to eat the best we can, but we often have to cut corners,” said Bolin, 38. “Sometimes, that means picking the $1.49 mac and cheese over $5 worth of vegetables.” Since Bolin discovered Emmons’ produce stand this summer, she has visited nearly every time it’s been open. “I couldn’t believe all the beautiful, fresh vegetables, and the price that she was charging was phenomenal,” Bolin said. “It’s making me and my family healthier.” Keeping this enterprise going is a labor of love for Emmons, who spent years doing it for free before recently taking a small salary.