Lifestyle

FROM THE GROUND UP: Bright spots in the winter |Feb 21, 2017

If you look broadly at the winter landscape, it’s easy to see it all just in browns and grays interspersed with the occasional dark green of non-deciduous trees. But look a little closer and you’ll find that there are shrubs that are full of color, providing an artistic contrast to winter’s otherwise monochromatic palette.

NUTRITION: Trust your gut instincts. Whole grains are good for you |Feb 21, 2017

The human digestive tract is home to tens of trillions of microorganisms, collectively referred to as the gut microbiota.

THE YANKEE CHEF: A quick, tasty recipe for ‘best gravy you’ll ever have’ |Feb 21, 2017

What a great way to make something that is good for you AND a phenomenal way to introduce vegetables into your children’s diet without them even knowing. I have done away with the classic roux thickener here, without any loss of flavor.

THE TABLE: ST. LOUIS, Missouri – 1904 was a very busy year |Feb 19, 2017

St. Louis Missouri lies on the western bank of the Mississippi River across from the state of Illinois. Directly across from the Missouri St. Louis is the city of East St. Louis, Illinois. It is a mighty river separating them as it flows south into the Gulf of Mexico.

THE TABLE: SCOTLAND – Would you eat Haggis? |Feb 15, 2017

Scotland lies in the northern third of Great Britain. It is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, the North Sea, the North Channel and the Irish Sea with a border to the south shared with England. The Scottish mainland and its 790 islands are part of Great Britain Great Britain is made-up of England, Wales and Scotland.

Winter’s bounty: Fantastic fruits to enjoy now |Feb 15, 2017

Orange, kiwi, clementine. Lemon, pear, grapefruit. Area chefs put a sunny spin on their favorite seasonal fruits, preparing them in ways guaranteed to ease those winter doldrums.

THE YANKEE CHEF: Versatile chutney makes good use of leftover dried fruit |Feb 14, 2017

Yes, I had some dried fruit left over (and as a gift) from Christmas. Usually I do something in the cake or pie department but I thought I would mix it up a bit and prepare a recipe that had some bite to it .

Elmwood Park Zoo in Norristown posts new photos of adorable jaguar cubs |Feb 10, 2017

NORRISTOWN >> The Elmwood Park Zoo has shared new photos on their Facebook page of the jaguar cubs who were born Tuesday, Jan.

FROM THE GROUND UP: Adding chickens to the garden |Feb 9, 2017

When it comes to the growing trend of raising backyard chickens, all the workshops and information I’ve come across have focused on the basics: coops and runs, breeds, feeds, brooding, and egg production.

THE YANKEE CHEF: This hearty side dish is packed with flavor |Feb 8, 2017

If you don’t have a mandolin for this recipe, it is easily prepared simply by slicing the potatoes and apple with a sharp knife as thinly as possible. If desired, cut potatoes in half and lay the flat side on a work surface to cut.

Wine + hot chocolate: Surprise your Valentine with this trendy treat |Feb 8, 2017

“We’re going to let some of that alcohol burn off,” said Patrick Byrne, after adding French merlot to a mixture of hot milk, dark chocolate, brown sugar, spices and more.

THE TABLE: The Native Indians of Pennsylvania |Feb 5, 2017

Long before the coming of the “white man” the state of Pennsylvania was inhabited by six tribes of “Indians.” They were the Shawnee and Ohio Valley tribe along with the Erie, Iroquois, Munsee Delaware, Susquehannock and the Lenape Delaware.

FROM THE GROUND UP: A few minutes can help the birds |Feb 2, 2017

Do you have fifteen minutes? No, this isn’t a GEICO ad! It’s an invitation to join in the 20th annual Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC). Launched in 1998 as a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society, the GBBC was the first online “citizen-science” project to collect data on wild birds and to display results in near real-time.

THE YANKEE CHEF: Warm up with this Italian-style split pea soup |Jan 31, 2017

If pancetta is too expensive, by all means try other cured hams, or even boiled ham. I have used a new product from my deli called Italian Hot Ham, and the heat is absolutely perfect. And if you are wondering if there is a difference between Canadian split peas and green split peas .

SNACK BOARDS: Offering something for every Super Bowl fan |Jan 31, 2017

Wearing a Steelers cap, Joe Martinelli carried a tray of Super Bowl food fit for a quarterback. Even though his team didn’t win, fans are sure to cheer his “snack board” suggestions for the big game.

Snow is on the horizon with Pennsylvania Snowshoe Race at Spring Mountain |Jan 27, 2017

UPPER SALFORD >> People that are missing the snow this season can chill out at the 12th Annual Pennsylvania Snowshoe Race on Saturday morning.

FROM THE GROUND UP: Time to think about the next veggie garden season |Jan 26, 2017

In just a few months, vegetable seed display racks will be going up in garden centers, hardware stores, and supermarkets. So many inviting varieties vying for your attention! Or maybe you’ve already gotten a mailbox-full of seed catalogues from Burpee, Parks, Johnny’s, and other seed purveyors.

Food just might get you high at High Street |Jan 26, 2017

We first met Ellen Yin while having dinner at Fork shortly after she opened it in a pretty much deserted stretch of Market Street in Philly’s Old City 20 years ago. Ellen, who worked in small restaurants while growing up in Rumson, New Jersey, in the late 1970s, wrote a business plan for a restaurant while she was a student at the University of Pennsylvania, where she would later earn an MBA.

FOOD: Dig into breakfast, lunch or dinner bowls |Jan 25, 2017

“Ooh. What’s that?” a woman in workout gear asked, admiring a colorful combination of banana, blueberries, granola and coconut atop a spoonable smoothie.

THE YANKEE CHEF: Jezebel Sauce complements these appetizer croquettes |Jan 24, 2017

Jezebel Sauce is a Southern condiment usually reserved for the holidays as a sauce for baked ham or even warm, melted Brie cheese. Consider it a perfect accompaniment to these delicious croquettes. And before I hear all about what croquettes really are (deep fried), this is almost the same thing, but without any added fat as a binder or any that may be absorbed from cooking.

Art & Antiques by Dr. Lori: Overlooked but valuable antiques |Jan 22, 2017

Ever wonder what valuable antiques are hiding in your house? There are many antiques, works of art, and collectibles that have significant value which many people want you to just toss out with the trash or put out on your front lawn at a low market priced yard sale.

The Pocono Mountains & West |Jan 21, 2017

The Pocono Mountains are located entirely within Pennsylvania and are a part of the Allegheny Plateau. Mostly called the Poconos and situated between the Delaware River and Delaware Water Gap to the east – surrounded by the Wyoming Valley, Lake Wallenpaupak and the Lehigh Valley.

THE YANKEE CHEF: This cake spreads some sweetness |Jan 18, 2017

One taste of that deliciously creamy spread — Nutella — and I was hooked. It wasn’t long before I made one of the best coffee cake-like desserts using this hazelnut spread. This recipe is a sugar cookie dough with an additional egg.

Have a tea party: January is National Hot Tea Month |Jan 18, 2017

Debbie Heth smiled and chatted as she poured Earl Grey à la crème from a green teapot in a cozy room decorated with royal photos.

NUTRITION: Turmeric should take root in our diets |Jan 17, 2017

Every year a new superfood emerges as the next must-have ingredient for good health. Such nutritional powerhouses as kale, quinoa and acai build in popularity until it seems like these once exotic ingredients become household names, found in many mainstream restaurant menus.

THE BREWHOLDER: Karamoor Estate teams up with Goose Island for farmhouse style beer |Jan 11, 2017

Collaboration brews — when 2 or more breweries work together to brew a single beer — have become more and more common over the past decade. What is less common is when a winery and a brewery come together to create a beer; but that is exactly what happened recently when Chicago-based Goose Island Beer Co.

Creativity, celebrity tips and more at the Philly Home Show |Jan 11, 2017

What’s your home improvement resolution this year?

THE YANKEE CHEF: Gluten-free cake is a ‘chocolaty delight’ |Jan 11, 2017

This is a ‘Yanked’ recipe because I have cut the amount of fat and sugar as well as creating a gluten-free cake that is exceptional, moist and delicious. Honestly, you will not be able to taste or feel the lack of gluten in this chocolaty delight.

the table: ERIE, Pennsylvania – the ‘Gem City’ |Jan 10, 2017

Across the state in the northwestern corner of Pennsylvania lies Erie. This city has gained the title of the “Gem City” because of the sparkling waters of its coastline on Lake Erie. It is the fourth largest city in Pennsylvania after Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Allentown.

THE YANKEE CHEF: A cake that speaks of childhood memories |Jan 4, 2017

Anyone remember the children’s show “Doodle Bops”? My children loved it! So this cake is now a standard in my home not only in title but because the flavor is reminiscent of a snickerdoodle cookie as well — which every child loves.

Photos: New Year’s Day Ski Freeze in West Norriton |Jan 3, 2017

WEST NORRITON >> The Port Indian Ski Club’s hosted its 37th annual Ski Freeze Sunday on the Schuylkill River in Jeffersonville. The event dates back to the late ’70s, and tis year, for the first time, the club hooked up with the triathlon club French Creek Racers for a polar swim, plunge and 5K run.

FOOD EVENT: PBS cooking show — America’s Test Kitchen— brings special event to WHYY Philly |Jan 3, 2017

Making last-minute substitutions in the kitchen can be a high stakes gamble.

the table: BANNACK, MONTANA — NOW & THEN |Dec 31, 2016

Let me tell you how I first heard about Bannack, Montana. While surfing the TV with the remote (over 200 channels and still it seems there is not much to watch). I saw my name “BANJACK” flash across the screen.

THE TABLE: Winter brings holiday celebrations! |Dec 31, 2016

It is that time of the year when most of us are busy getting ready for the holidays. 92% of the population of United States celebrates the birth of Jesus and Christmas during December. The Bible does not tell us what time of the year he was born.

The table: Beautiful SAMOA ... Where the New Year begins |Dec 31, 2016

Well 2017 has arrived – Wishing you a good and prosperous New Year!

THAT’S A WRAP: Wonton wrappers make easy New Year’s apps |Dec 28, 2016

When Christy Denney thinks of wonton wrappers, one word comes to mind: possibilities.

NUTRITION: Resolve for a healthy workplace makeover in 2017 |Dec 27, 2016

Now that 2017 is nearly here, many have started thinking about New Year’s resolutions. While we’re often well-intentioned during this time of self-reflection and goal-setting, very few of those who make resolutions will actually reach their goal in the new year.

the table: Christmas around Europe |Dec 25, 2016

Christmas traditions of these five European countries being featured are mostly from the old school. Today, many of these same countries are catching-up with more modern celebrations. Forty five days is the usual span of the Winter Holiday Season throughout Europe and around the world.

International fitness calendar features Pottstown area No Excuse Moms |Dec 22, 2016

POTTSTOWN >> A group of local moms showed just how confident they are with their bodies when they posed for a worldwide calendar for fit parents.

Photos: Living Nativity at Sacred Heart Church, Bridgeport |Dec 22, 2016

BRIDGEPORT >> Sacred Heart Church presented its annual living Nativity Wednesday evening ― inside the church building, so participants and guests were not exposed to the frigid temperatures outside.

’Tis the season for bubbly drinks |Dec 21, 2016

This holiday season, wow guests with festive, bubbly drinks that are sure to please. Whether you’re hosting brunch, cocktails or dinner, local experts have you covered, starting with a Champagne Mojito.

THE YANKEE CHEF: Two holiday hot toddies to enjoy |Dec 21, 2016

Sip on these on a cold winter’s night.

FAITH: Reflections on the Season of Waiting |Dec 19, 2016

What are you waiting for? How many times are we asked this question at this time of year? What are you waiting for? Cookies to be baked? Candles to be lit? Gifts to be wrapped? Cards to be sent?

FOOD: Go ape for monkey bread |Dec 14, 2016

Editor’s note: Scroll down for the classic brioche, caramel drizzle glaze and Monkey Dunkey Bread recipes.

In her latest PBS special, Lidia Bastianich explores the lives of American veterans |Dec 14, 2016

In her latest one-hour PBS special, Chef Lidia Bastianich demonstrates that it doesn’t have to be Veterans’ Day or Memorial Day to honor members of the American armed services — any holiday will do.

THE YANKEE CHEF: Want to make a Christmas Puff? This recipe will help |Dec 13, 2016

Yes, I do realize the both puff pastries and eclairs are one and the same, but many differentiate them by how they are ultimately formed and baked. That is why I am giving you a foolproof recipe that can be used for the classic eclairs as we know them and a special Christmas Puff to enjoy while family and friends can be there to see you gloat over a perfectly soft and crispy treat.

Nothing says the holidays like ugly sweaters |Dec 12, 2016

Outside a tiny storefront on Magnolia Boulevard in Burbank, Calif., Chealy Jean is picking through a few rolling racks of holiday sweaters for something “retro funky” to wear to a work party.

Frozen! Chefs’ freezers ... revealed |Dec 6, 2016

This holiday season, save yourself some hassle and put your freezer to work. Need inspiration? Area chefs share a glimpse inside their iceboxes.

THE YANKEE CHEF: A cheesecake pie full of holiday flavors |Dec 6, 2016

Yes, I have taken a shortcut here with the use of prepared whipped topping. Does anyone object to spending less time in the kitchen and more time with family during Christmas? I agree!

Norristown residents treated to free Christmas trees |Dec 5, 2016

For Digital First Media NORRISTOWN >> Over one hundred families got a Christmas must-have crossed off their lists on Saturday afternoon.