Herbs have been used for medicinal purposes since ancient times, but they also play an important part in culinary dishes. Herbs not only add unique flavors, they add a much needed pop of color to most cuisines. Spices and herbs can also cut down or replace added salt and sugar in most foods. The terms "herb" and "spice" are often used interchangeably, however, herbs come from aromatic plants grown in a temperate climate zone while spices come from tropical plants. Usually, the leaves of herbs are used, while spices come from bark, berries, flower buds, roots and seeds.
Since 2000, McCormick & Co. has been unveiling its Flavor Forecast list for the new year. The trends and ingredients list is created by a team of global chefs, culinary professionals, trend trackers and food technologists. McCormick's executive chef, Kevan Vetter, says the Flavor Forecast was designed to help chefs and home cooks refresh their menus and think outside of the box. This year's flavor forecast predicts Eastern Mediterranean blend of spices like cumin, cardamom, black pepper, nutmeg and many more will be popular.
Parties, family gatherings and work socials are a pleasant bonus during the holidays, but tend to overwhelm people's calendars, causing a bit of holiday stress. While hitting every social event may be difficult to conquer, it is even more challenging for those whose job requires shift work or anything other than the traditional 8-to-5 schedule. First responders, truck drivers, factory workers and many more are among those who work evenings and graveyard shifts.
The 2016 winter solstice will occur on December 21 at exactly 4:44 a.m. The solstice marks the beginning of winter when the sun has reached the lowest point in the sky, thus creating the shortest day of the year. "At exactly 4:45 a.m., the sun will start going north again, and the sunlight will increase," says Bob King, photo editor at the Duluth News Tribune and writer of the Astro Bob blog. "The winter solstice is just a point in time," he says. "It's a time of change and the sun will return and start moving north immediately after."
The anti-inflammatory diet is less of a diet and more of a way of eating. The diet's roots derive from the Mediterranean diet with only a few subtle differences. Elizabeth Meyer, a registered dietician at Sanford Health, says that vegetarians could also adopt many of an anti-inflammatory diet fundamentals because it stresses the consumption of plant-based proteins as the main source of protein.