How a Georgian Princess’s Cookbook Helped Build a Celebrated Restaurant


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This is for friends who fantasize about food all day long.

The book, entitled Georgian Cuisine and Tried Housekeeping Notes, was published in 1874 by a Georgian princess named Barbare Jorjadze. Today, Princess Jorjadze is a national hero: She is considered the first feminist of the country, and is famous for her advocacy of women’s rights in Georgia. In her decree, she wrote about the damning expectations placed on women: “From a very young age, we are told, ‘since god made you a woman, you must sit silently, look at nobody, go nowhere, shut your ears and your eyes, and just sit there. Education and learning of languages is none of your concern.” Now, the Georgian National Library has dedicated a full room to her, in honor of her advocacy efforts. A copy of Georgian Cuisine and Tried Housekeeping Notes is on display at the Georgian Literature Museum and the Georgian National Library, too.

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Will McGough — Atlas Obscura

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The Truth About the “Vegan Lobby”


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The idea that there’s a powerful vegan lobby has caught on with vegans and non-vegans alike. In a Telegraph essay last year, titled “I would sign up to veganism if it weren’t for all the damned vegans,” a photo caption uses the term to refer to PETA protestors, thus equating the vegan lobby with animal rights groups as King does. But others use the term even more loosely. A writer for The Guardian seems to believe that the vegan lobby is people who love soy. And in a recent essay, vegan writer Janey Stevenson wrote, “I’ve deliberately disconnected myself from the vegan lobby because frankly, it’s embarrassing,” without explaining what, exactly, she’d disconnected herself from. A PETA membership? A vegan Meetup?

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Emily Atkin — The New Republic

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The Surprisingly Intolerant History of Milk


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But even with these deep cultural connections, milk held a peculiar status among early civilizations. The Greeks castigated barbarians for their gluttonous desire for dairy, and in Rome, milk was widely regarded as low-status food because it was something only farmers drank. Northern Europeans would earn similar ridicule for their love of reindeer milk, and Japanese Buddhists later rebuked Europeans as “butter stinkers.”

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Daniel Fernandez — Smithsonian

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Beyond ‘litti chokha’


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Sunday special on Bihari cuisine.

“Bihar is very rich (in food), but it has been looked down upon due to multiple political reasons. Therefore, its cuisine got left behind as well. Look at Bengal, for example, whose food has really travelled,” says chef and food consultant Ajay Chopra, who has made some Bihari dishes on his show Northern Flavours on the Living Foodz channel. He calls the thekua, made during the annual festival of Chhath, no less scrumptious than a Scottish shortbread. In modern kitchens, fans of the fennel-flavoured thekua often bake it instead of frying it. Chopra went a step further to fashion a bold thekua millefeuille, putting a French spin on it, for a food event recently. Another favourite of his is the Bihari murmura mutton—cooked with a lot of mustard oil and turmeric, spooned over puffed rice and topped with chopped onion, green chillies and lemon.

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Neha Bhatt — Mint

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The Palm Oil Problem


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Organizations like Rainforest Rescue have demanded a boycott of palm oil, urging consumers to use local oils made from sunflower seeds or rapeseed instead. As of December 2014, the European Union has made such a boycott easier by requiring foodstuff producers to clearly indicate what kind of oil is used in their product. If consumers begin shunning palm oil, the drop in demand will have an influence on its global price, which will in turn affect the prices producers receive at the local level.

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Vanessa Steinmetz and Karl Vandenhole — Spiegel

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A HISTORY OF MANILA IN 9 DISHES


A food article for your Sunday!

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ADOBO AT PURPLE YAM (RESTAURANT IN MALATE OR KIOSK IN ESTANCIA MALL, CAPITOL COMMONS)

Amy Besa, owner of Purple Yam in Brooklyn and Manila, also a self-described Manileña, makes her adobo with apple cider vinegar because that’s what was available in her city supermarkets growing up. A recipe from her book Memories of Philippine Kitchens uses baby back ribs and replaces the peppercorns with tellicherry peppers. She shared her recipe with the New York Times, where it maintains a perfect five-star rating from hundreds of homesick Filipinos.

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Roads & Kingdoms

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What caused Cape Town’s water crisis?


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A sign of times to come when cities start running out of water.

While within the Mother City a blame game seems to be the only way for politicians to attempt to absolve themselves of direct responsibility, the truth is that the looming Day Zero has a host of geneses. And, given these multiple causes, there should be little surprise as to the pending crisis.

Firstly, South Africa’s budget planning is myopically short-term. The country has lurched from election cycle to election cycle as both national and local spheres attempt to plug the deep holes in social expenditure and exclusion. Politically, elected office bearers regard this as providing immediate benefits to the poor and in return, expecting electoral rewards at the polls.

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Daniel Silke — Fin24

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