Dear Readers,

Letters to the Editor welcomes your comments, questions, criticisms and suggestions. Looking for a specific recipe or trying to find a product? Please don't send those requests as a Letter to the Editor—we receive too many individual requests to reply to all of them here. Try our Message Boards or our Search page first.

If you would like to write a Letter to the Editor use our feedback form.

Note: To prevent spammers from automatically gathering email addresses off this page we have replaced the @ symbol with an * (asterisk). To respond to someone, please replace the asterisk with the @ symbol.


- The Editors


Questions & Comments

Dear Foodwine.com,

I am searching for a recipe for a White Meatless Gravy (with a great taste). My husband is a vegetarian, however for the holidays I will be preparing Smashed Potatoes (one of the dishes) and would like him to enjoy this with a white gravy. Any help or tip or "recipe" would be much appreciated. The easier the better!!

Thanks so much.


Dear Shane,

My Kate's Global Kitchen column for November 10 was all about Meatless Meals—especially the Holiday table. For a gravy, I suggest Jeanne Lemlin's meatless mushroom gravy—it may not be a "white gravy" but you can lighten it up by using white wine instead of red. Or, make a white gravy using vegetable broth (it will taste better if homemade), butter and flour. Here are links to recipes for a mushroom gravy and a Classic Mock Meatloaf.

Thanks for asking.


Kate Heyhoe



I'm needing to prepare a recipe indicative of the "northeastern" part of the U.S. Any recommendations on a site that could help me with this?


Dear Bugaieski,

You may want to search at Google.com for such a site. Additionally, I just received notice of a great cookbook that may fit your needs: The Book of *New* New England Cookery, by esteemed authors Judith and Evan Jones. It contains 900 recipes. To purchase, click on this link and search for it by title: Amazon Cooking, Food & Wine

Why not use a Manhattan Clam Chowder? You'll find a quick and easy recipe for this typical "northeastern" dish by clicking on this Manhattan Clam Chowder link.

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Foodwine.com,

My name is Joyce Selucky and I need to know how long homemade sugar cookies and chocolate chip cookies will stay fresh? My son is in the Air Force and was deployed to fight terrorists. I want to make him some baked goodies but do not know what to bake or how long the baked goodies will stay fresh. Would it help keep them fresher if I sealed them in a vacuum sealer? Any ideas would be appreciated. It takes about 23 days for a package to reach him so that is my problem with freshness. Do you think a bundt cake of some flavor would work. Thanks in advance!

Joyce in Texas

Dear Joyce,

Nancy Baggett, author of the The All-American Cookie Book, sent this reply to your query about cookies:

Here are some suggestions both for selecting the right cookies and for packing them.

You are right--sturdy (even hard) cookies do ship and hold up especially well--biscotti are among the best examples, but some American cookie fans find them too tough and dry. Other less exotic American-style possibilities incude ginger snaps, sturdy gingerbread boys or other crispy sorts of ginger and molasses cookies; firm, not too thin sugar cookies; the drier, non-crumbly sort of oatmeal cookies (ones with either chocolate chips or raisins would be okay); and even a chocolate chip cookie or plain chocolate cookie if it is on the firm and dense rather than tender-chewy side. (Spicy cookies tend to keep their fresh taste for several months; cookies with nuts tend to taste stale very quickly so should be avoided.)

Very moist or gooey cookies, bars, and filled cookies are not a good a good idea at all--the moisture can cause them to spoil over time. Very thin, fragile cookies are also out--they will turn to crumbs from the bumps and knocks of shipping.

Moisture and exposure to air are the enemies of freshness, so cookies should be packed in airtight bags or containers. Each type of cookie should be in a separate container--otherwise they will all begin to taste the same. Since mailing costs are partly determined by weight, I like to use heavy-duty (but still light) sealable plastic bags (or double bag using thin bags), and then protect the cookies further by actually taping sheets of bubble wrap all around each bag. For shipping to another part of the world, I might put the bubble wrap and bags of cookies in a cardboard box, put a waterproof plastic bag around the box, then put this in another box cushioned with styrofoam peanuts. The double bagging and boxing not only protect against jarring, but against leaks if the package gets rained on or stored in a damp building.

- Nancy Baggett

Joyce: Personally, I love my FoodSaver vac machine. It sucks out the oxygen which is what hastens food deterioration. I'm no expert on how much longer it will extend shelf life, but I'd guess about 1-2 weeks for cookies that are unrefrigerated or unfrozen. Also, you might want to consider chocolate chip biscotti, which (and Nancy please correct me if I'm wrong here) would last longer and taste great dipped in coffee or tea (the preferred drink of Afghanistan).

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Foodwine.com,

I would like to know whether Lora Brody's dough enhancer is gluten-free kosher and has dairy as an ingredient.

Thank you.

Agnes Bernfeld

Dear Agnes,

The products are not kosher certified (yet), and the Enhancer has gluten as a primary ingredient. There are no dairy products in the Enhancer. Hope this helps.

Lora Brody




Searching for a book on "sauces" I found your Cookbook Profiles index. There I found everything from bugs to cheese to holiday feasts, but for a book on sauces. Can you recommend one book on sauces that crosses cultures, seasons and base-food types (what the sauce goes on or accompanies)?

Thank you for your time and effort.

Colleen Lankford

Dear Colleen,

The ultimate book on sauces is entitled "Sauces: Classical and Contemporary Sauce Making" by James Peterson. The original edition won the 1992 James Beard Foundation Cookbook of the Year award. It has recently been updated and re-released by John Wiley & Sons, publishers.

On December 19 our Cookbook Profiles column will profile the new book.

If you're curious about the book before then, click here to search for the book at Amazon Cooking, Food & Wine.

At nearly 600 pages, it's truly the sauce bible.

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Foodwine.com,

Enjoyed reading about Ireland on your site. May I suggest two invaluable books for anyone visiting Ireland—the Travellers' Guide and the Shoppers' Guide to Ireland. Produced by John & Sally McKenna, these Bridgestone Guides give thumbnail sketches of what to look out for over here. Easy reading and easy on the pocket. Finally, I thoroughly enjoy your site, but disappointed that I can't enter the contests.

Avril Allshirehowe

Dear Avril,

Sorry, but our prize sponsors can only ship to the United States and Canada at this time. But you can still play Gourmet Guess and receive a score. Many people write to tell us that they enter the contest just for the challenge.

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Foodwine.com,

I searched the WEB for Gourmet Foods and linked up! I especially enjoyed the current information on wine!

Jolene Brucks
Cape Coral FL


Dear Foodwine.com,

I heard that you give away CUTCO cutlery. Is this true?

Jennifer Johnson

Dear Jennifer,

Each month on our website we host a contest called Gourmet Guess. There is a different prize every month and in past months the prize has been Cutco cultery.

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Foodwine.com,

I am overwhelmed! I can't believe I'm a winner of the EspressoPro espresso machine in your Gourmet Guess contest! Thank you ever so much. I am a coffee/espresso fanatic—so this wonderful prize will be used very, very often at our home. The address as shown below is correct. Again, many, many thanks. I really enjoy your website and will continue to recommend it to others.

Thanks for making my day!

Sincerely, Alicia Lewis—one very happy camper!!
Colorado Springs CO


Dear Foodwine.com,

I can't believe it. How wonderful. This will make a great surprise for my husband. He wanted one of these for Christmas. Thank you so much for having this contest.

Laura McDonald
Fort Benning, GA



Wow, this is awesome. Thank you so much. I can't wait to get my prize.

Once again thank you so much. And thank you for holding the contest.

Lorna David
Grover Beach CA


Previous Letters to the Editor

How to subscribe to our free monthly eGG-Roll newsletter.


This page created December 2001

The FoodWine
Main Page


Summer Recipes
& Grilling Tips

   Clip to Evernote

Bookmark and Share


Twitter: @KateHeyhoe

Search this site:

Advanced Search
Recent Searches



Kate's Global Kitchen
Kate's Books
Cookbook Profiles
Global Destinations
Holiday & Party Recipes
I Love Desserts
On Wine

Caffeine and You Caffeine and You
cooking kids Cooking with Kids

Conversions, Charts
   & Substitutions

About the
Global Gourmet®
   Contact Info
   Privacy Statement


Copyright © 1994-2017,
Forkmedia LLC



cat toysCatnip Toys