Every once in a while we like to share information about a new product. This is one of those occasions, because over the weekend we became very fond of Beanitos.
They're a low-fat alternative to potato chips. Available in either black bean or or pinto bean and flax flavors, the chips are baked then flash-fried in vegetable oil and finished with a light dusting of sea salt.
Not only are they satisfyingly salty and crunchy, but they're high in protein, complex carbohydrates and fiber to provide a feeling of satiation (not a common experience with potato chips, which are hard to stop eating once you get started)). Beanitos are wheat-free, soy-free, trans-fat free, cholestrol free and empty calorie free, and unlike those cute but fragile soy chips, are sturdy enough to stand up to a thick cheese dip or chunky salsa.
Nutrition breakdown: 10 chips have five grams of fiber, 7 grams of fat, and 140 calories. You can find 'em at Whole Foods for $3.99.
Join the ROOT for a Friday Night Dinner at 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 9, at Christ Episcopal Church (Sixth and Scott streets, downtown Little Rock). Enjoy a sit-down meal made from quality local ingredients followed by a presentation from the Arkansas Rice Depot, Arkansas' only statewide food-bank network.
On the menu: brown rice casserole with Falling Sky smoked turkey and shiitake mushrooms (vegetarian option available), honey-glazed carrots with ginger and rosemary, and organic field green salad with Honeysuckle Lane cheese, Arkansas pecans and dill buttermilk dressing. Dessert will be fruit and berry cobbler with Yarnell's ice cream.
Tickets are $12 for adults and $5 for kids. Please RSVP via e-mail or call Rebecca Stover at (501) 613-9024 or Jack Sundell at (501) 944-8500 and specify meat or vegetarian option.
Five percent of ticket sales will be donated to the Arkansas Rice Depot. Guests may also arrive early for an art exhibit opening and reception in the Christ Church Gallery for artist Lynn Bell starting at 5 p.m.
Much to my delight, my good friend Kami recently bestowed on me a Ziploc freezer bag containing a melted-milkshake-like batter of "Amish secrets." At first glance, the tepid mystery substance didn't seem like much of a gift, but it turned out to be the gift of friendship: Amish Friendship Bread.
Along with the symbolic batter of camaraderie, Kami shared the story behind this cooking chain and gave me a sheet of paper outlining 10 days' worth of baking instructions. The origins of the batter (known as starter) would likely be impossible to track down -- like the chain e-mails that cycle through our spam folders. And, although the belief is that Amish women started the chain, the Internet dispels the myth and offers starter recipies for this bread and many others (bummer).
Still, I prefer the myth. Therefore, I tackled the 10 days with excitement and baked my delicious cinnamon/sugar bread with TLC before delivering a bag of starter to four friends: one in Dallas, two co-workers in Little Rock and a good friend in Tulsa, Okla. I'd like to think that our bags of starter will soon spread across the state and around the country.
Too ambitious? Maybe so, but be on the lookout. You may get lucky and receive some starter of your own (and it could've come from me!).
Just in case someone shares the starter with you, find a link to the 10-day recipe here.
The 29th annual Soup Sunday, benefiting Arkansas Advocates for Children & Families, was held at Embassy Suites and featured soups, breads and desserts as well as a silent auction. Entertainment was provided by The Carl Mouton Ensemble featuring Ramona Smith.
The edge of the pan isn't the only tool you'll need for cooking the right egg. Check out the great gadgets featured in the gallery above.
Here's some tips for preparing a good egg:
Better Boiling: Place eggs in cold water and begin timing when water starts to boil.
Easier Peeling: Hold under cold running water, crack shell at the large end where the air sack is located, and peel away shell.
Soft-boiled: 1 minute. Whites start to set, yolks are barely heated.
Medium-boiled: 3-5 minutes. Whites and yolks are starting to set and center is slightly creamy.
Hard-boiled: 10 minutes. Whites and yolks are solid.
Poached: Simmer 3-5 minutes. Whites are coagulated and yolks are still soft.
Aside from eggs being a symbol of new life and spring, they're also delicious and nutritious. Whether they're scrambled, fried, poached, served in a quiche or prepared any number of other ways, we'll have seconds.
Scrambled, over easy, deviled, poached, fried, pickled, huevos rancheros, and sunny side up, soft-boiled, hard-boiled, in an omelet, frittata or a quiche … we love them no matter how they’re prepared. Read on to discover five favorite brunch or anytime egg dishes from around the city:
Five Eggs Out
Carnes Huevos Frittata
Marinated beef tenderloin tips, farm fresh eggs and cheddar cheese topped with house-made salsa and avocado relish and a salt and pepper cream.
1620 The Restaurant, 1620 Market St., (501) 221-1620, 1620Restaurant.com
10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday brunch
Prosciutto & Artichoke Omelet
Thin slices of prosciutto with fresh thyme, artichoke bottoms, ricotta and Parmesan cheeses.
B-Side Restaurant, 11121 N. Rodney Parham Road, Ste. 35B, (501) 554-0914
7 a.m.-1 p.m. Wednesday-Friday
9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday breakfast and brunch
Norwegian smoked salmon, two poached eggs, hollandaise, fresh dill and capers atop a toasted English muffin.
Capi's, 11525 Cantrell Road, Pleasant Ridge Town Center, (501) 225-9600, CapisRestaurant.com
11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday brunch
Egg & Olive Sandwich
Classic egg salad with green olives on toasted sweet egg bread with leaf lettuce.
Trio’s, 8201 Cantrell Road, (501) 221-3330, TriosRestaurant.com
11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Monday-Saturday
Local Egg Buyer’s Guide
Get an assortment of fresh, farm-raised eggs from various breeds of chickens.
$3 per dozen (bring your own carton)
1800 S. Chester St., (501) 529-8520, DunbarGarden.org
Certified Arkansas Farmers’ Market
You'll find fresh farm-raised eggs of all colors from Foodshed Farms, Money Pit Farms, Kornegay Berry Farms and Daley Dairy for $3-$5.50/dozen, depending on type of egg. Online ordering is available year-round at Cafm.LocallyGrown.net, and the outdoor market holds the season’s soft opening at 7 a.m. Saturday, April 17.
500 block of Main Street, North Little Rock’s Argenta District, (501) 231-0094.
There was a time when people didn’t mind standing in line for a fabulous breakfast. Bard’s in the Heights was one of those places, and we miss it still. It was the perfect way to ease into a Saturday or Sunday. You could see people you knew or wanted to know, and waitresses knew your name and what you wanted to order.
That was then. This is now. Breakfast and brunch are back, but in style and upscale.
Nancy Tesmer is known for her work at Lilly’s Dim Sum, Then Some in the Market Place Shopping Center. She’d been thinking about breakfast for quite a while. Using the party room from Lilly’s as a breakfast room was a fairly easy undertaking. When she made up her mind it was full tilt boogie. If you want eggs, bacon, hash, French toast, pancakes, waffles and biscuits, The B-Side is your place. Or if you want something a little different, this is your place.
We visited the first time around 10 a.m. on a Saturday. There were a few people standing in line, but because Tesmer suggested we share a table with another couple at the back of the room, we did not wait. For us, sexy jazz was perfect for a quiet, lazy day. And we saw people we knew.
I ordered vegetarian hash ($7.99) and my husband ordered the waffles ($5.99); a safe bet. Fresh squeezed orange juice in a small glass seemed extravagant at $3.99, but it tasted so good I didn’t care. The hash arrived, and as advertised it included crisp potatoes, onions, peppers, slow cooked tomatoes and cheese. I ate every bite.
On a second Saturday visit my husband tried French toast kabob, French toast on a stick wrapped with bacon and drizzled with maple syrup ($7). It’s a little different, but it was fine. He also tasted the crispy beignets with lemon curd and whipped cream ($8.49). No food for me, but I did manage to drink a mimosa made with that delicious fresh-squeezed orange juice. It’s served in a small flute ($6), so watch yourself.
Jeffrey Moore, B-Side chef, has teamed up with Tesmer to create a number of breakfast dishes that you probably haven’t tasted in your regular coffee shop. I never saw a frittata on Bard’s menu, but it sure looks great ($7.99). Some dishes just have a different name, like biscuit mountain, a concoction of buttermilk biscuits, sausage and Pommes Rosti topped with a house-made sausage gravy and two pan-fried eggs ($10.99). Figgy piggy is a glazed pork tenderloin with sweet potato hash ($11.99). Fried chicken and waffle is just what it says, a golden boneless leg of chicken and a waffle ($11.49). Thankfully Moore added a healthful, gorgeous fruit and yogurt parfait with homemade granola ($6.99).
Next visit I plan to check out Lil’uns (what they call their “sides”; the main dishes are called “Big’uns”). Smoked gouda grits ($2.99), oatmeal with brown sugar, butter and cinnamon ($2.49), fruit plate, and Pommes Rosti ($2.99) are just a few of the offerings.
Service was flawless. Dishes were brought out by one person, and coffee was added by someone else. Tesmer seemed to visit with everyone. Watching the wait staff was like watching water ballet, smooth and effortless. The décor is peaceful. Art decorates the soft yellow walls of the square room. Ah, just like we wanted.
More in Our Restaurants Directory
These hilarious offerings come from the Museum of Hoaxes web site, which contains plenty more. Maybe they'll inspire you to create an April Fool's Day food hoax of your very own.
Pinanas (2009) British supermarket chain Waitrose placed ads in newspapers announcing the availability of a new fruit, the pinana (a combination of pineapple and banana). The text of the ad read: "Pinanas. Fresh in today and exclusive to Waitrose. If you find that all Waitrose pinanas have sold out, don't worry, there's 50 percent off our essential Waitrose strawberries."
Squeez Bacon (2009) Online retailer thinkgeek.com unveiled Squeez Bacon, bacon paste that could be squeezed from a tube. It described it as "the world's most perfect food" and added this: "Squeez Bacon is fully cooked 100 percent bacon. Due to the patented electromechanical process by which Squeez Bacon is rendered, it requires no preservatives or other additives. Each serving is as healthy as real bacon, and equivalent to four premium slices of bacon! You can put it on sandwiches, pizza, pastas, bacon, soups, pies, eat it hot or cold (warm Squeez Bacon on toasted rye is to die for), substitute it for bacon in your recipes, or even eat it right out of the tube like we do! If it's edible, it's better with Squeez Bacon."
Chokle (2009) British candy shop A Quarter Of announced it would soon be selling the Chokle, a chocolate bar filled with helium gas. "It's a chocolate bar that tastes great, makes you squeak and makes everyone else laugh ... pure genius! Take a small bite and your voice goes up a little, eat a whole bar in a single mouthful and you approach your maximum Mickey Mouse squeakiness!"
Cyclone Dairy (2009) The web site of Cyclone Dairy appeared online in late March 2009. It purported to represent "the first dairy brand to offer great-tasting products made exclusively from cloned cows." Its tagline was "Quality. Consistency. Isn't that what your family deserves?" The smiling family featured on the site's front page included a young boy missing his front teeth.
On April 1, 2009, ice cream maker Ben & Jerry's revealed it had created the site, hoping to raise "onsumer awareness of the government's recent approval of cloned milk and meat within the human food supply chain."
Rechargeable Gum (2009) The web site HowStuffWorks described a new startup company, ReBubble, that was coming out with rechargeable chewing gum. The gum could be "recharged" by placing it in a special recharging station that plugged into either a standard power socket or connected to a computer via a USB cable. "After it finishes charging, the gum should have the same taste and texture as it did fresh from the package." There were reportedly problems if people ate partially charged-sticks of gum. But the company was trying hard to prevent "catastrophic gum failure."
TOrganic Air (2009) American grocery chain Whole Foods Market revealed a new product on its web site: organic air. It came in .02-ounce bottles in four varieties: original, sea breeze, mountain wind, and salt and vinegar. The grocery chain also announced that it was opening a new store in Antarctica and that it was offering a free spider with every purchase of 50 pounds of organic bananas.
Lickverts (2009) Russian Standard Vodka ran ads in United Kingdom newspapers claiming to have created the world's first "lickvert": an ad dipped in vodka. Readers were urged to "Lick Here," though also reminded to "Please lick responsibly."
Silent Crisps (2009) The Daily Mail revealed that Walkers Crisps had designed noise-free crisps (potato chips) to be marketed as "Ready Silent Cri-sshhp." They would allow people to "eat loud snacks in the cinema without disturbing the person next to you." The crisp was said to have "the same flavour and crunchiness, except it comes already crushed."
Nestle’s Finger (2008) Nestle put out a press release (with an accompanying web site) announcing they were changing the name of the Butterfinger candy bar to The Finger in order to give the candy "a shorter, more contemporary name."
Exploding Maple Trees (2005) NPR's All Things Considered ran a segment on a drop in maple syrup consumption, triggered by the low-carb craze, which supposedly was causing a serious problem for New England's maple-tree industry: exploding maple trees. The announcer reported: "An untapped tree is a time bomb ready to go off … The trees explode like gushers, causing injuries and sometimes death. If untended, quiet stands of nature's sweeteners can turn into spindly demons of destruction. The Vermont Health Board reports 87 fatalities, 140 maimings, and a dozen decapitations, caused by sap-build-up explosions this year."
Cook From Your Car (2004) BMW ran an ad in the Guardian to unveil its new Satellite Hypersensitive Electromagnetic Foodration (SHEF) Technology, which would allow drivers to cook their dinners from their car as they drove home from work. All the dials for the home oven were built into the dashboard of the car and communicated wirelessly with the actual oven at home. Drivers could monitor the progress of their meal via a built-in oven-cam. The ad directed readers to a web site that featured images of a roasted chicken and a sleek sedan, and offered recipes such as Chicken a la M42.