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.

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- The Editors


Requests & Kudos


I absolutely loved your site. I do recipe research and write a small column, people are always asking for more info, I can send them now to you!!

Pamela Angieri
Claremore OK


Dear Kate,

In looking at some of your recipes on Global Gourmet I thought you might be the person I could ask for some assistance.

I am having a wine tasting with heavy hors d'oeuvres. Because they are my wine tastings, I choose the theme. This time around I chose "spikey." Amazingly, this is a somewhat difficult theme to live up to.

My question is this: do you know of any good recipes that would fall under this theme? Odd interpretations are always accepted! There will be 6 people and 6 dishes and 6 wines.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you in advance,

Clark LaForge

Dear Clark,

That's quite a challenge. You couldn't come up with something simple, like "green foods" or "crunchy things", eh?

OK, here are some ideas for "spiky" hors d'oeurve....

Make a cheese ball that looks like a hedgehog—use slivered almonds as the spikes. Or, stick thin pretzels in a cheese ball. Or Italian grissini (thin breadsticks).

Pipe the centers of deviled eggs with spikes.

Serve exotic fruit—the kiwano or horned melon is a spiky tropical fruit found in gourmet markets. Star fruits when cut across look like 5-pointed stars. A pineapple has a spiky top (and outer layer).

Serve penne pasta—penne always looks like small spikes or quills to me.

Untrimmed carrots, long radishes, string beans, and asparagus can all be considered spiky. Artichokes with prickly leaves are spiky. Serve them as crudites with a dip.

Skewers are spiky. Thread them with fruit and cheese and let them stick out of a watermelon, or other melon, or apple.

Belgian endive leaves are pointed and spiky—separate them and place them on a platter around a wheel of Brie.

And what about the tentacles of calimari—would you consider those spiky?

You can also make your own spiky creations using dough—pie dough, bread dough, pizza dough, puff pastry.

That's all I have for a first reaction. Let me know what you come up with!

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Kate,

I have your recipe for Mardi Gras Confetti Salad. Please let me know if the orange lentils are dried or canned and how many does the recipe serve. I got it off the internet probable a year ago and now I cannot remember where I found it. It looks great and I want to fix it for a mardi gras party we are going to in Galveston. Thanks so much.

p.s. Where can I find your other recipes?

Gerry Hornstein

Dear Gerry,

The recipe for Mardi Gras Confetti Salad is part of my Global Gourmet Cookbook. The recipes appeared online at various times during the past few years, but you can go to our Search page and find it easily. The link to the Search page appears on most of our pages.

All of the recipes in the Global Gourmet Cookbook serve 4 unless otherwise specified. Use dried lentils—though they look orange, Indian markets usually label them as 'red lentils." They cook quickly and if overcooked, turn mushy—cook them just until they soften but still have texture.

Let me know how it turns out—and as they say at Mardi Gras, "Let the good times roll!"

Kate Heyhoe


Dear Foodwine.com,

I have enjoyed your site for several months and want to say THANKS. Also I recently either read or saw a report about how healthy the food from Crete is. Seems lots and lots of olive oil on everything. Since I am constantly fighting high cholesterol I am very interested in finding a source for Crete's cooking. Could you help????


Hugh Sims

Dear Hugh,

Olive oil is a popular recipe ingredient in many Mediterranean countries, including Greece (Crete is a Greek island). Please use our Search page to look for recipes containing olive oil.

- Foodwine.com


Dear Foodwine.com,

I needed a recipe for Blackout Cake and just typed it in the MSN search engine.

I am still very surprised I actually got one and one that I'm sure will be just wonderful!

My husband grew up in Brooklyn and loves this cake—I had never heard of it until a year or two ago. He will be very surprised—thanks for making it available to everyone!

C. McNamara


Hi, My daughter flies with the military and is looking for a cookbook she thinks is named "Food Lovers Companion". It is (according to her) a very large book, that resembles a dictionary for food lovers, cooks, etc.

I'm a newbie to this 'puter stuff, so please excuse me if this request sounds a little trite, but I'd sure appreciate any leads you might offer me.

Thanks so much.


Dear Jakegram,

The Food Lovers Companion is actually a small paperback published by Barron's and authored by Sharon Herbst. There is a new edition out so it should be available from Amazon.com online, or any good bookstore.

- Foodwine.com


Dear Foodwine.com,

I just tried out the Southwest Skinny Chicken, after receiving your reply. Great!

With many thanks.

Francoys Crepeau
Ottawa, Ontario


Turkey Dear Foodwine.com,

You have excellent information, and an excellent site.

Today I needed information on cooking a turkey for an upcoming Valentines Day celebration. The details that you folks provided on the subject are "the best."

Thank you, and have a great day,

P.S. I found your site through the Excite search engine.

Dean Hedstrom
Coldstream, BC


Message In a Bottle

Dear Foodwine.com,

Found you searching for a recipe—MAJOR COMMENT—re: Jim H.'s response to Maragaret on HA GOW WRAPPERS 2-13-99—who died and left him in charge of your editors ? His response was rude, crude and socially unacceptable. I have seen his name many times on your Message Boards—is he an employee? If that type of attitude is going to be the norm on your site—I for one will sorely miss visiting your site! (it was under receipe swap) Personally have found the "swap" and "ask your question" boards very informative and educational. Couldn't personal attacks be dropped?

JC Day
Westworth Village TX

Dear JC,

Jim H. is not an employee.

We have no control over the content of the Message Boards other than removing offensive posts when readers point them out. On reading the post you mention (though it was not actually in Recipe Swap, but in Ask Your Question), it did not violate any rules. He appeared to be simply informing the original poster that using all-caps was generally not preferred on the board and that it is considered yelling or shouting on message boards and in email. This is also true on the Internet in general. He then went on to politely answer her question.


- Foodwine.com


Guess What? You Won!

Dear Foodwine.com,

I received your Email about the Gourmet Guess. That's fantastic! The address you have for me is correct. I love playing the Gourmet Guess - it's a challenge! Keep up the good work—and I'll keep playing.

Kathleen Murray


Dear Foodwine.com,

Thank you so much for the prize!! I'm so excited to be a winner. I really enjoy the Gourmet Guess and look forward to it each month. I'll be watching the mail for my prize!

Dana Ciappini
Alpharetta GA 30022


Looney About New Year

Dear Foodwine.com,

A minor quibble: what we're talking about here is indeed "Chinese" New Year. "Lunar" New Year happens whenever somebody wants it to be, as long as it is based on a lunar calendar. and lots of cultures do celebrate New Years based on a lunar calendar on dates other than Chinese. For example, hundreds of millions of people in India celebrate Lunar New Year in September (or thereabouts, of course—it always moves around relative to our European non-lunar calendar). Admittedly, the Chinese celebrants of New Year in February outnumber the Indian celebrants of New Year in September and other celebrants of New Years on yet other dates, but why should that make us here, in English, assign the term "Lunar New Year" to mean only the one preferred by Chinese?

Brent Thompson


Republishing Recipes

Dear Foodwine.com,

I love your web page, and am wondering in regards to your recipes. What is your rule about others using your recipes, or publishing them else where? I would like to put them on my web page, or link them to my recipe page, and of course give you credit. I do not sell recipes. I am just gathering them and placing them on my recipe page.

Marna D.E. Gatlin

Dear Marna,

We license many of our recipes from cookbook publishers or individual authors. Their copyright permission must be granted for re-publication rights outside our website. In most cases the contact information or copyright appear with the recipe or article. We cannot grant permission on any of those recipes—you must contact each author or publisher individually.

If you wish to reproduce content for which we own the copyright, such as recipes created by Kate Heyhoe or some of our staff writers, we'd be happy to grant permission as long as you include a credit line and link to our site at www.foodwine.com. Please submit a complete, one-time list for permission. As I'm sure you understand, due to staffing limitations, it is impossible for us to grant permission on an ongoing recipe-by-recipe basis.

- Foodwine.com


Who Spilled the Spelt?

Editor's Note: The February eGG-Roll newsletter contained a short article on spelt, an ancient variety of wheat that's making a comeback. Here are some comments...

Dear Editor,

I LOVED your article about Spelt. I have tried it, and it's true that it has a "different" flavor—just a little richer and smoother than other spaghetti.

I mixed it up soome of their rotini with a pesto sauce and it was great. All the little "spirals" in the rotini held the sauce very well. I don't have a recipe for the sauce but I made it with garlic, parmesan, olive oil, and basil. I purée it. Then I toss in some pine nuts and blend just enough to chop the up a bit. I don't want the nuts to be puréed and smooth. I want some texture. It was great.

Thank you again. Now I know something about the Spelt I ate!!!



Dear Foodwine.com,

Great newsletter. Thanks.

Lori F.



I enjoyed the article you guys passed along on spelt. I have often wondered why it isn't as popular as wheat, and I assumed it was some sort of strong wheat lobby in the beginnings of our country or a consipiracy or something.

Anyway, I would also like to sing the praises of spelt. I am allergic to wheat, and thank goodness for spelt. I get spelt bread and pasta, and it is far superior in flavor to wheat. I also use the grain in casseroles and other things. It's just fantastic. For those of us who are allergic to wheat, our choices are very limited, (no pasta, pancakes, cookies, cakes, bread, etc.) and spelt allows us to enjoy a happy diet while getting more nutrients than before.

Viva spelt!

Karyn D.


Suffering Sulfites!

Dear Foodwine.com,

I cannot tolerate sulfites in wines. I love wine but it makes me go brain dead. Do you know of any wines that don't have any sulfites added? I found some in San Jose but because I live in Arizona I can't have it sent to me. Do you have any ideas on how to get wines to Arizona even if you can find un-sulfited wines? Do wines from Italy have sulfites added. I love their wine.

Thank you.

Mary K. Myers
Mesa AZ

Dear Mary,

I' ve faxed your email to Calif.'s Frey Vineyards, 14000 Tomki Rd., Redwood Vly, CA. 95470, Ph 707-485-5177. They are NO SULFITES champions and should help.

Dunno of any Italian winery w/o sulfites added.

Fred McMillin


Peppered Leopard

Dear Foodwine.com,

I was using this resource to encourage my granddaughter, Jennifer, to cook. I have been away from her for a little while and now I find that I can't find old friend Leopard. Can you give me his address?


Joseph Poynor

Dear Joseph, The Peppered Leopard originally appeared on our America Online site in 1995 and 1996. You can now visit him on the web at www.cookingwithkids.com.

- Foodwine.com


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