Mary’s Memo #2252

     When Cooking Light Magazine said The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook was one of their “top 100 cookbooks in the past 25 years” I knew I wanted it for my cookbook shelf. All over the country, people are hungry for information about buying and cooking seasonally, locally and sustainably, and no one knows more about this than Santa Monica-based
writer and teacher Amelia Saltsman. Amelia brings her vast knowledge and experience together in this award winning cookbook. Using one market as a lens, Saltsman tells the story of farmers’ markets everywhere and provides more than 100 recipes so home cooks around the country can create flavorful, uncomplicated dishes using ingredients found at their local markets. She also offers a seasonal guide to fruits and vegetables and countless tips on how to select and store them.
     Meyer lemons are available from October through May. Botanists say they’re a cross between a lemon and orange, sweeter and less acidic than a regular lemon. Chief and Rays have Meyer lemons so I picked Ultimate-Pucker Lemon Bars to share with Memo readers.


1/2 cup powdered sugar2 cups flour1/4 teaspoon salt1 cup (1/2 lb) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch piecesFilling:
4 eggs1-1/2 cup granulated sugar1/2 cup Meyer lemon juiceZest of 2 Meyer lemons1/4 cup flour     Preheat oven to 350ºF. To make crust, in a bowl stir together the flour, powdered sugar and salt. Add butter and cut it in with your fingertips or a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Gently pat mixture into bottom and up sides of a 9x13-inch baking pan. Bake until just lightly golden, 20 to 25 minutes.     Meanwhile make filling. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, granulated sugar, Meyer lemon juice, zest and flour until thoroughly blended, about 1 minute. Pour filling over partially baked crust. Continue to bake until the filling is set and crust is golden, 15 to 20 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack before cutting into bars. Recipe makes 24.Source: The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook by Amelia Saltsman (Blenheim Press, August 2007; $22.95/softcover). Learn more about Amelia on her website:
     Be careful when you handle hot Pyrex® cookware. It can shatter when removed from the heat or exposed to an extreme change in temperature (such as putting it in cold water after heating), according to many reports. Though Pyrex® is supposed to withstand such temperature changes, it can weaken with age, and some reported accidents involved relatively new dishes. Be as cautious with Pyrex® as you would with any glass cookware: keep your face away from the dish, use oven gloves
and keep the kids away from the hot dishes.
Source: University of California, Berkeley Wellness Letter, January 2012.

     This advice persists despite evidence of scientific support. And while you might drink extra water as part of a weight-loss regimen, it’s not clear that doing so will help you lose weight. A study found that consuming food with a high water content, like soup, increased the feeling of fullness and reduced hunger
but drinking the same amount of water as a beverage with the same food did not. Some studies suggest that drinking a lot of water might boost metabolism; others suggest it doesn’t. Also unsubstantiated is the Institute of Medicine report that most healthy people get the water they need by letting their thirst guide them and by consuming it through various sources including other liquids and food.
Source: Consumer Reports on Health, January 2012.

     If you’re concerned about arsenic in your orange juice, buy Florida's Natural® brand that isn’t made from concentrate that probably came from Brazil. Even when other orange juice is on sale I prefer Florida's Natural® juice. Read labels carefully and decide for yourself.


 Eat breakfast regularly. Weigh yourself weekly. T rack food intake. Count calories and fat grams. Limit eating out. Limit food variety and don’t splurge on holidays. Watch fewer than 10 hours a week of TV.Successful dieters average about 1,800 calories a day, with less than 30% of those calories from fat. According to Susan B. Roberts, PhD, director of Tufts University Energy Metabolism Laboratory, “catching problems quickly is a major route to ongoing success, which is why regular weighing and tracking what you eat is so valuable.”
Source: Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter, January 2012.
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