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Questions & Comments

Dear Foodwine.com,

I need help. I have tried everything and nothing seems to work. I used to make a sour dough bread back home. It always came out perfect. Since I have been in Colorado, 5 years now, It doesn't work. I have emailed everyone i can think of, called alot of places and almost given up. I even tried different sour dough starters thinking they would work but they didn't. I would love to keep using the one I have used for almost 20 years since it's so wonderful. Can you help me? I don't use any metal, I use bought well water instead of the treated water. It refuses to get sour and bubbly as it used to. Here is the recipe I use for the starter.

3/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons instant mashed potatoes
1 cup warm water

I leave this out for 3-5 days and then put in the fridge, then take out, feed and leave out 8-12 hrs before taking a cup to make bread.

I feed starter every 3-5 days, in the morning and leave starter out of refrigerator all day (8-12 hours).

Mix together and add to starter. Cover. At the end of the day, take 1 cup of starter and return remainder to the refrigerator. Make bread with this one cup or throw it away.

Thank you.



While I can't tell you why the starter isn't working I can offer some suggestions. If you're not opposed to using a pinch of active dry yeast it may be just the thing to give your starter the burst it needs. I'd add it right at the beginning. Also—I'd suggest trying real mashed potatoes instead of instant.


Hope this helps—let me know.

Lora Brody

Dear Lora Brody,

I tried your Sourdough Bread Enhancer and just love it. What a time saver, without the mess.

Thanks For The Time.

Laura Thompson

Dear Laura—

Thanks so much for the great report. If you would like a free sample of one of our other products, send me your snail mail address

Lora Brody

Lora Brody is author of "Bread Machine Baking: Perfect Every Time" and has more tips for breadbakers at her website www.lorabrody.com.


Dear Foodwine.com,

Hello I am looking for a simple recipe to take to church for mission week. Our mission country is Argentina and I am supposed to make an entree could you please help me and could you also give me the recipe for a simple dessert. I was going to do the flank steak but it didn't sound native enough and could you please give me one that is not to spicy hot.

Thank you very much.


Vickie Snyder

Dear Vickie,

You'll find several recipes in our Global Destinations section under Argentina. Argentina is big on meat, meat, meat—specifically their beloved beef. I would suggest the Carbonada Criolla, a hearty stew of beef, potatoes, corn, tomatoes and even peaches. The Potato & Beef Empanadas can be adapted into a dessert by using a fruit filling, such as one you might use for turnovers.


Kate Heyhoe


Hi, Really interested in long term preparation of HORSERADISH....How do you prepare for keeping 10 jars full for the next while...freeze? ...Can??? I need help soon...Thanks.

Rich Hirschmiller
Rocky Mtn. House, AB

Dear Rich,

Be sure to use our Search feature at globalgourmet.com. A Search for Horseradish revealed an article by Judy McCann, our resident "Root Queen." It's about Preparing Horseradish and contains hot tips and recipes perfect for the coming holiday season.

In it, she says: "To keep prepared horseradish (commercial or homemade) at its flavorful best, store it in a tightly covered jar in the refrigerator or in the freezer. It will keep its good quality for about four to six weeks in the refrigerator and for six months or longer in the freezer. Buy or prepare only the amount of horseradish that can be used in a reasonable time...You can store fresh roots for several months. Just wash them, place in polyethylene bags, and store at 32 to 38 degrees F."

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Foodwine.com,

I needed a basic pie crust recipe to accompany a story I'm doing about a group of area women who bake pies for their church. May I use the Basic Flaky Pie Crust recipe from your website? The story will appear one time only in the Daily Hampshire Gazette, a newspaper with a circulation of about 9,000. You will be credited so that readers might visit your website for more info.

My deadline is soon. Please let me know.


Anna Viadero

Dear Anna,

Thank you for your interest. Recipes are often licensed to us by their copyright owners and as such we cannot grant reprint rights for them. You would have to contact the copyright owner directly and in this case, you don't mention who that is (look on the webpage). If the recipe is from a cookbook, you'd have to contact the publisher.

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Foodwine.com,

Can you tell me where I can buy sea salt in the San Francisco/Oakland area?

Barbara Hartman

Dear Barbara,

You're living in Food Mecca, so sea salt should be readily available at any of the gourmet, specialty or natural food stores. Try Sur la Table, Williams Sonoma, Whole Foods Market. You can buy crystals and use them in a grinder, or buy coarse or fine ground sea salt. Most of these stores should carry La Baleine, which is what I use everyday (it comes in tall red or blue cannisters), and for special occasions, I grind a light grey Celtic sea salt. I don't recommend Hain sea salt though—it acts and tastes more like Morton's than sea salt. For a complete run down on salt, check out Michele Anna Jordan's great book Salt & Pepper.

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Kate,

What a wonderful book! I love having Cooking with Kids For Dummies, around! Your book has made me more confident when cooking with my children. Thank you again! Also I wanted to let you know of this new product that I ran across called The Learning Tower, it's a perfect stool for my children to be able to stand on and I don't have to worry about it tipping over or them stepping off the edge! Your book, Cooking with Kids for Dummies and The Learning Tower are a perfect combination for anyone who enjoys cooking with their children. Please let others know of this wonderful product so they can also have a place for their children to stand.


Thank you again for writing your book that I use so often!

Karen Daly


Dear Foodwine.com,

Is it possible that I may subscribe to the 'Wineday Newsletter' sans all the other goodies that come with Global Gourmet?

Your attention and consideration are most appreciated.


Michael D. Morrison
Austin TX

Dear Michael,

Sorry, there is no WineDay newsletter. Also, our wine column at www.foodwine.com is no longer daily. It is a weekly column and is now called WineWeek. There is an extensive archive of WineDay and WineWeek articles in the WineWeek Archive To subscribe to our free monthly eGG-Roll email newsletter, which includes a summary of upcoming updates and cookbook profiles, food news and humor, a Gourmet Guess question (and answer!) and a featured recipe from our site, please use this link: eGG-Roll.

Kate Heyhoe



Dear Foodwine.com,

Re: Gwen Ashley Walters column "Travel Bites"

I question her apparent serious historic inaccuracies in her recent article. She states "Raimundo Carillo was given four land grants in the 1700's for his service to the newly formed Mexican government." The Mexican government was not formed until the early 1800's ...and a conquistador would hardly have been awarded for his service. A conquistador was a member of Spain's forces conquering Mexico in the 1600's.

Pat Cologne

Dear Pat,

Thank you for taking time to provide feedback on my September Travel Bites column for Global Gourmet. I did not intentionally misstate the facts of the ranch's history. In addition to my visit to the Alisal, I used their printed marketing materials to draw from for the article and one of their brochures says "What began in the late 1700s as a land grant to conquistador Raimundo Carrillo has, since 1946, been a working cattle ranch and secluded hideaway."

Since you pointed this out to me, I checked their website and I also spoke with an Alisal representative, and they now say the land was granted to Carrillo in 1846. I'm sure that new brochures will be in the works soon.

Thank you again for bringing this to my attention. I hope that you continue to visit Global Gourmet and Travel Bites.

Best Wishes,

Gwen Ashley Walters, CCP
Travel Bites Columnist

Dear Gwen,

Thanks for the follow-up on the Alisal Ranch promotional brochure stuff. If these resorts claim "historic" then they need to be accurate to the letter. Carrillo may have been granted the land in the 1800's but then he was two centuries beyond from being a "conquistador".

The Alisal owners may now be more attuned to their real background because you called the errors to them.


Pat Cologne


Recent Contest Winners

Dear Foodwine.com,

What a great way to start the day! I'm thrilled. My family just started camping again after buying a pop up camper and this prize of BBQ Tools will definitely make our camping adventures even nicer! Thank you so much for offering the Gourmet Guess contest each month. I always enjoy my visits. You have the correct address and I hope that everyone there has a pleasant and safe holiday!

Thanks Again!

Kelly Britton
Wake Forest NC


Dear Foodwine.com,

I am so very thrilled to respond to your email! I've always enjoyed your website and have learned a lot while taking the Gourmet Guess trivia test. Our family of five will get great use of these BBQ tools! Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I look forward to receiving this spectacular prize.

Sheryl Pimentel
Tracy, CA


Dear Foodwine.com,

Hi, what a wonderful surprise! I am so psyched about these grilling tools! Now I can quit tempting fate by throwing away the rusty ones I'm using now-- (just kidding).

Again, thanks SO much. My family and I look pleasantly forward to using this prize.


Debra Corbett
Olathe, KS


Dear Foodwine.com,


Thank you for the great news!

That is a very nice prize which will be put to good and frequent use in my household. I really like it.

Thanks again,

Leena Hautaniemi
Placerville CA


Dear Foodwine.com,

Wonderful!!! We grill year round at my home...yes, even with two feet of snow. My husband fancies himself the BBQ King, so he'll be ecstatic to finally have some decent tools. I'm anxious for him to peruse the book for new ideas and recipes. Thanks so much for offering a thought provoking contest (I've learned alot) and for a most interesting site.

My address is correct as you have it. Again, thank you!

Sharon Lerette
Auburn ME


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