Pan-Fried Shrimp Royal / Pannestekt Shrimp Royal

A seafood recipe found in “The Skillet Cook Book”
published by Wesson Oil & Snowdrift Sales Co in 1958

Pan-Fried Shrimp Royal / Pannestekt Shrimp Royal

Pretty pink shrimp are tempting and pretty in this quick dish.

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Russian Borsht / Russisk Borsht

A classic Russian dish found in “New Fashion Plates for Your Menu” published by Planters Edible Oil Co in 1932Russian Borsht / Russisk Borsht

Borsjtsj is a traditional dish in Eastern Europe, consisting of a vegetable soup, where the main ingredient usually is beetroot, while the other ingredients may vary. It is assumed that it originally originates from Ukraine.

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The Forgotten, Fascinating Saga Of Crisco

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Crisco, you may recall, was made from partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, a process that turned cottonseed oil (and later, soybean oil) from a liquid into a solid, like lard, that was perfect for baking and frying. Unfortunately, these wonderful qualities depended on “trans fats” that have since been implicated in heart disease. As a result, crisco_01partially hydrogenated oils have fallen out of favor in the food industry. Even Crisco changed its recipe, cutting the amount of transfats in one serving to less than .5 grams. That allows Crisco’s label to state that it contains zero transfats.

But did you know that in the 1980s, health activists actually promoted oils containing trans fats? They considered such oils a healthy alternative to the saturated fats found in palm oil, coconut oil, or beef fat. In 1986, for instance, the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), described Burger King’s switch to partially hydrogenated oils as “a great boon to Americans’ arteries.”

David Schleifer, a scholar at Columbia University’s Center on Medicine as a Profession, lays out the story in the January issue of the journal Technology and Culture (and, more briefly, here). According to crisco_02Schleifer, pressure from these activists was crucial in persuading fast-food chains to drop palm oil or beef fat in favor of partially hydrogenated soybean oil.

In the mid-1990s, CSPI and other health activists changed their tune as scientific studies turned up evidence that trans fats increased artery-clogging forms of cholesterol.

This led to yet another odd twist, which Schleifer explores in a separate article. Big food companies mobilized to debunk this claim, funding a study of their own. They expected it to demonstrate that trans fats had no such harmful effect.

To their dismay, the study confirmed the earlier results. The companies felt compelled to look, once again, for different, healthier, oils. The potato chip industry, for instance, went for a version of sunflower oil with higher levels of oleic acid. As Schleifer puts it: “Industry meddles with science, but science meddles with industry.”

Text from http://www.npr.org/

Aish Baladi – Egyptian Flatbread / Egyptisk Flatbrød

A North African flatbread recipe found on saveur.com
Aish Baladi – Egyptian Flatbread / Egyptisk Flatbrød

Similar to pita, but made with whole wheat flour, this Egyptian flatbread is traditionally baked in scorching-hot ovens in Cairo’s bustling markets. Home cooks can achieve similar results with a baking stone and an oven cranked to high.

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