Quinoa: Ancient Grain Makes Comeback

The relationship between ancient civilizations and their staple foods is fascinating. The people of antiquity weren’t stupid. Through a long process of trial and error, they discovered and perfected food crops that were both nutritious and peculiarly well suited to the places in which they lived. Consider the Incas. They developed the largest and most […]

Substitute Stevia for Nutrasweet

January is “diet season.” After succumbing to the gustatory temptations of the holidays, people seek to undo the damage wrought by that one extra slice of pumpkin pie. A common strategy is to substitute artificial sweeteners for sugar to reduce the number of calories consumed. The most common artificial sweetener used in the U.S. today […]

Which Butter is Better?

If you lived in Juneau in the 1980’s, you’ll remember Le Petit Paris bakery. Its proprietor, Tom Loatman, made perhaps the best croissants on the West Coast. He insisted on using only French butter in his baking. Occasionally he would run short on imported butter, and come to our shop to get organic butter. I […]

Butter is Good

Unless you have been living in a cave, you have probably heard that trans-fats are bad for you. Hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils like margarine and vegetable shortening are definitely “out.” The evidence is mounting that these chemically altered fats may contribute to health conditions ranging from heart disease to certain cancers to immune system […]

Salt of the Sea

Salt has been used for thousands of years to make food more palatable. In modern times it has gotten a bad name, and many people work hard to restrict their sodium intake. However, it may be that ancient people were on to something. The salt that traditional people used was not the same as the […]