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


Cheese Whiz

Dear Foodwine.com,

As a former President of the American Cheese Society I would like to personally thank Lucy Saunders for her article on raw milk cheeses, the codex and Cheese institute. This is at its root an economic argument where commodity cheesemakers have no economic advantage in having raw milk cheese, and in fact their hegemony over distribution is slowly being threatened by American farmstead and natural cheese production.

Thank you for the comments, I do hope everyone fights this.

Daniel Strongin
Richmond CA



Dear Kate,

I'd like to compliment you on a really excellent web site. I've been perusing these food web sites for the past 3 years, gleaning recipes and advice and have found none better. This evening after searching your main page, I submitted a request using your search engine for "cookware reviews" and it took me directly to your letter to Joe of June 15, 1998. A direct hit, answering my question completely.

Keep up the good work.

Frank Urbanski


When In Rome

Dear Foodwine.com,

I have been a fan for years and used to frequent your offerings on AOL. I have a correction to note about the info Fred McMillin gives at https:///food/wineday/wd0198/wd010198.html. He may very well have been teaching wine history for 30 years or so but that doesn't make him a historian on calendars or Roman kings.

The following data is not accurate: "And, Numa Pompilius, the second king of Rome, added January to the ten-month Roman calendar. The month was named after Janus (JAY-nus), the god of beginnings. People prayed to him when they were about to start something new, especially on January 1, the first day of the new year."

While Janus is the god of beginnings and he was publically invoked in prayer on January 1st, the start of the new year was February 1st up until the Julian calendar. See the following web site: https://www.astro.virginia.edu/~eww6n/astro/RomanCalendar.html

"The Roman emperor Numa Pompilius (715-673 BC) introduced February and January (in that order) between December and March, increasing the length of the year to 354 or 355 days. Then in 450 BC, February was moved to its current position. The Roman calendar was eventually supplanted by the more rational Julian Calendar in 46 BC."

Jim Pompilio (or if you prefer the ancient spelling Pompilius)
Clifton Park NY

Hi Jim,

Thanks a lot for the correction, which will appear in the February 1, 1999 WineDay with full credit to you. Send more anytime. I agree I'm not an expert about ancient Rome or anything else...I'm just an enthusiastic learner, who appreciates your help.


Thanks Fred,

I just re-read my email and noticed it might have sounded a bit harsh in tone. That wasn't my intention at all, I was merely trying to point out a historical error. I'm a huge food & wine lover and love the site's content, keep up the great work. Thanks for the credit.


Jim Pompilio
ComDoc Office Systems
Latham, NY

Preparing Salmon  

Scandinavian Holiday

Dear Kate,

I was searching in Internet to find a recipe for an English Christmas treat, and stumbled over your story of making of Gravlaks. I just had to write to you then, since I am from NORWAY and the gravlaks I believe comes from Norway, not Sweden. Okay, lets call it Scandinavian then!!!!!

A few other comments from me are: we usually eat the gravlaks as a starter on rye bread and always have the sauce, "sennepssaus," mustard sauce with it (usually made as oil, eggs,water s/p, and spicy mustard). And we also serve gravlaks as a main course, then with dill stewed creamy potatoes. And the fun thing is that I have American relatives in North Carolina, and I always send a "Norwegian" box to them for Christmas, with 3 types of Gravlaks, mustard sauce, 3-4 different "sild" (herring), matured cheese, "geitost," (the goat cheese) and "potetlompe," Potato pancakes....that is a treat for them!!!!!

I will celebrate Christmas dinner with RIBBE, a kind of porkrib, where the fat layer is cut in cubes and goes all crispy and nice, with christmas sausage and meatballs, and two special sour crout..one made with red cabbage. Then I will later eat PINNEKJØTT, a cured and salted (or smoked) version of Lamb (Sheep for the tough ones) Ribs, which are steamed over special wood branches for 2 hours!!!!!!! Looking forward to eat all the good food. And to all the Christmas food we always drink AKEVITT...the strong, spicy, herb spirit from Norway. Akevitt is also good to use when making the gravlaks instead of, as you wrote, vodka.

Have a wonderful Christmas, or in Norwegian,

Best Regards from
Miss Janike Grøn-Olsen

Dear Janike,

Same to you and many thanks for the detailed note on Norwegian holiday food. I rechecked several sources and all list gravlax as being Swedish—but I think your suggestion is much better: from now on I'll refer to it as Scandanavian, since it clearly is a dish enjoyed beyond national borders.

Warm regards and GOD JUL to you as well,

- Kate Heyhoe


Cooking Schools

Dear Kate,

My daughter was an "A" student who completed food service courses in High School and lacked only one semester of completing the associates degree in culinary arts at Oklahoma State University, Okmulgee, OK (the courses were all general education). She is interested in going back to school, but only for cooking courses. She had mentioned the CIA in Napa Valley, but their website indicates that they do "seminar" type training. Their school in NY is way out of our budget. Can you recommend any alternatives that might interest her. Also, are there any professional journals that you would recommend that she obtain a subscribtion? Thanks. I have enjoyed browsing your site!

Pat Beck

Hi Pat,

There are a number of good schools—the best resource is The Guide to Cooking Schools published by Shaw Guides. You can buy it in bookstores or access it at www.shawguides.com. It lists vocational as well as short term classes.

As far as a professional journal, the slickest is FoodArts, out of of New York (you won't find it on newstands, but every it covers the major gourmet chefs of the world). Other trade magazines are Nation's Restaurant News and Restaurant Business—which cover everything from McDonald's to the minimum wage laws.

I also recommend your daughter consider joining some professional groups for networking, newsletters and mentoring programs—such as Women Chefs and Restaurateurs (WCR) at 502/581-0300 and the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) at 502/581-9786 (tell either group that I sent you). They'll send you sample materials and she may find that networking with colleagues is a better strategy than winging it on her own.

Good luck to you and her!

- Kate Heyhoe

Dear Kate,

Wow! I am totally impressed. I thought it would be weeks before someone could respond to my e-mail question. Your response was even in time for me to give a subscription or two to Margaret Anne for Christmas. Thanks!!



Hi, I was wondering if you could help me find a cooking school in Hong Kong. I don't even really know if there are any. My husband is being re-located to Hong Kong in March or April, and I would like to learn more about Asian cuisine while I am there (two years). Any information you can provide me with will be very appreciated.

Thank you,

Sally Casey

Dear Sally,

Go out to www.shawguides.com—they publish the Shaw Guide to Cooking Schools and it includes international listings.

Good luck!

- Kate Heyhoe


Holy McCow!

Hi there,

Please help.

I am living in Macau (near Hong Kong), and the recipe I wish to make needs Buttermilk.

What would the name for it be out here, or how do I make buttermilk.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Sharon Patterson

Hi, Sharon,

How's life in the new Hong Kong? It's been years since I was there and it's gone through such major changes this decade!

I assume your recipe for buttermilk is one used in baking. You can substitute any of these for 1 cup buttermilk: 1 cup plain yogurt; or 1 tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice plus enough milk to measure 1 cup (let stand for a few minutes); or1 cup milk plus 1-3/4 teaspoons cream of tartar.

Good luck in the new year—and let me know how the festivities for the lunar new year in Hong Kong go. I believe it's the Year of the Rabbit coming up, no?

Gung hay fat choy!

- Kate Heyhoe

Hi there Kate,

Thanks for the help—These Chinese look at you as if you are mad when you ask for buttermilk. Hong Kong has changed a lot—not all for the better. Standards have dropped, and nearly all Chinese seen in the streets—use to be 90% westerners. Macau goes back to the Chinese at the end of 1999—not sure how that will effect us.

Once again thanks for the help.

Hope you had a good Christmas and all the best for 1999.


Sharon Patterson


Wrap It Up

Dear Kate,

I'm sure you've seen the sandwich wraps that restaurants have been serving for the last year or two. Why can't I find any receipes for them on your site? Or do you know where I can find them?


Nancy Kieffer

Dear Nancy,

Have you tried using the Search feature on our AOL site at keyword: eGG? If you type in the word "wraps" you will find this feature as A Basket of Wraps. Our AOL content differs from the content at globalgourmet.com, so try using the Search features on both sites next time.


- Kate Heyhoe

Cooking with Kids  

Kate's Cookbooks

Dear Kate,

Do you have a cookbook available for purchase?


Diann and Rob

Dear Diann and Rob

Thanks for asking—my first printed cookbook, Cooking with Kids for Dummies, comes out in Spring 1999—stay tuned to the Global Gourmet for an update when it's released, and visit our cookingwithkids.com website around March 1. In the meantime, my Global Gourmet Cookbook is located here on the website, with over 200 international recipes for home cooks, and it may soon be released in hard cover.


- Kate Heyhoe



I like to know if "the global gourmet" is a book or monthly magazine, I might want to order one.

Thank you.


Dear Isabella, The Global Gourmet is a website "magazine" (or e-zine) that publishes new content every day except Sundays, and the site also contains my online cookbook, the Global Gourmet Cookbook. Coming in Spring 1999 look for my printed cookbook called Cooking with Kids for Dummies.

- Kate Heyhoe


Not In Carmel

Dear Kate,

Can you please tell me how to carmelize onions, or where to find this info. Thank you.

Francine Satriale

Dear Francine,

Be sure to get acquainted with the Search feature On Foodwine.com site—I wrote a column on the exact topic of caramelized onions (yum!), but didn't remember when I wrote it. I used the search feature and found it for you (it was from Jan 22, 1998). You can access the column at https://www.foodwine.com/ggt/ggt0198/ggt012298.html.


- Kate Heyhoe


Cool Yule

Dear Kate,

I'm looking for two French desserts—one is the Christmas log Buche de Noel—I think it is called. The other is a Christmas tree shaped confection of creampuffs with spun sugar decorating an holding it together—I don't know what it is called.


Dear DolFIN,

You're partially in luck—John Ryan wrote a terrific "Just Good Food" column in December 1997 on how to make a Buche de Noel, or Yule Log (it's really easy!). Access it at /food/egg/egg1297/just1297.html

Happy holidays!

- Kate Heyhoe

Thank you so much for the Buche de Noel instructions by John Ryan. It was a great article and the recipes and instructions make it sound fairly easy to get good results.



Tech Talk

Dear Foodwine.com,

I tried to access the recipes I found on your website after doing a search on "Brazil", but all gave me a message that the URL didn't exist. I hope you can clear this problem up so that I can try out some of this country's fabulous cuisine!

Elizabeth Santas Kraatz, RN, PhD
School of Nursing
University of Minnesota

Dear Elizabeth,



Perhaps you found an old link indexed by a search engine. Most search engines add links but then do not update them when they change. Everything on our site is always available by navigation from the main page at


- Global Gourmet


Dear Foodwine.com,

Hello, I am a new comer on your site and I am interested in getting some of your recipes by email (it saves pages when you print them), such as the Easy, Exotic Indian Buffet, and a few other ones. Is it possible to do so?

Thanks for your answer,

Francois Spica

Dear Francois,

We currently do not have an email service for the recipes appearing on our site. You can subscribe to the eGG-Roll, our monthly newsletter, which incluides an overview of new recipes on the site and one sample recipe.

- Global Gourmet


Dear Foodwine.com,

When I try to save recipes from your site, my browser crashes. Also, if I do manage to save the file, the text in the side bar is mixed into the recipe text, thus requiring some tedious editing with a word processor. Anything to be done about this?


Dear Karen,

HTML tables allow us to format our pages for the web. The printing problem seems to appear on certain combinations of browsers and operating systems that have difficulty printing HTML tables. We have found that we can print the recipes without any problem from most versions of Netscape but encounter problems with some versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer.

What browser version and operating system (Windows 3.1, 95, 98 or Mac or Unix) are you using?

Reported workarounds include saving the page as a text file and printing it, though this doesn't give you the best looking printout. You also wrote that your browser crashes when you try to "save". That has never been reported before so that issue may be a specific problem on your system.

- Global Gourmet


December Prize Winner

Hi Folks,

The coffee maker arrived today. I haven't used it yet but I can tell you I am really thrilled with this win. I can't wait for my first sip of coffee from this machine. It looks fabulous. Thanks so much for choosing me as a winner of Gourmet Guess, your fun and educational contest.

Karen Pike Davis
Easton PA


Home On the Range

Dear Foodwine.com,

I like your Western Cookbooks roundup, but it only features 3 books and I have them all. Please add more.

PS. a friend authored a book perfect for this category. It's called "The Great Ranch Cookbook" and the author is Gwen Ashley Walters. It features 30 top western guest ranches and their cuisine.


Dear Jeff,

The archived article you discovered is a round-up of newly released Western cookbooks current at that time, and not intended to be a complete historical listing. We don't update past articles but if we decide to do another Western round-up we'll keep your friend's book in mind.

- Global Gourmet



Dear Foodwine.com,

A friend of mine came across your page about latkes: /food/egg/egg1296/eggsalad.html and told me about it. I just want to say it was a great page of stories, with just the right amount of schmaltz, goose and otherwise. My grandparents were Latvian and Lithuanian, but now I feel a little Polish (and G-d forbid, a little New York) as well. Great pages and recipes. Thanks for putting them on the web.

Rick Garlikov (Rick*Garlikov.com)


Dear Foodwine.com,

Gosh what a Godsend this site is....I will follow your instructions when I cook my first turkey tomorrow. Thanks for all the great information.

Sandy Gally


For the past few years, we have maintained a column of comments from readers on America Online regarding their Best & Worst Food Gifts. This past December we received more letters on this subject. Here's a sampling.


Previous Letters to the Editor


This page created January 1999

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