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Michelle Edelbaum's Blog

August 13, 2009 - 11:37am

I’m growing a small garden in my yard and after some success last summer I decided to get adventurous this year: I added a tomatillo plant.

Tomatillos are tart, plum-size green fruits that look like small, husk-covered green tomatoes. They can be used raw but cooking enhances their flavor and softens their tough outer skin. Since I love them in fresh summer recipes for salsa, guacamole, sauces and more, I was easily inspired to plant a seedling in my garden. Not sure if tomatillos are for you? Here are 5 reasons to love tomatillos:

1. Their flavor is irresistible, with hints of lemon, green apple and herbs.
2. They’re low-maintenance and can even be grown in a big pot. All they need is plenty of water and sun.
3. It’s easy to spot a ripe...

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March 9, 2009 - 4:36am

Peanuts and peanut products, such as peanut butter, are just the latest items to be recalled because of Salmonella contamination. But does that mean you should stop enjoying these otherwise healthy foods? No! Peanuts and peanut butter are rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. Plus, peanuts deliver some protein, fiber, magnesium, copper and vitamin E.

What you should do before you enjoy peanuts or peanut products is check to make sure the food you have isn’t part of the recent recall. The Food and Drug Administration’s website at fda.gov is the best place to go for an up-to-date list of products involved in the recall.

But once you’ve determined your peanuts and peanut butter have a clean bill of health, enjoy them in...

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February 6, 2009 - 3:36am

Chocolate is definitely the way to my heart (and I make sure my heart gets some TLC at least twice a day!). I can think of very few things with chocolate that I don’t like (chocolate-covered potato chips, gummi bears or bugs).

Since I indulge regularly, I’m lucky that chocolate is actually good for me. Researchers have discovered that moderate amounts of flavanol-rich dark chocolate (my favorite) have a blood-thinning effect, which can benefit cardiovascular health, and it may also boost the immune system by reducing inflammation.

All the more reason to whip up some healthy chocolate recipes to satisfy my cravings.
Here are 4 quick chocolate desserts:

Chocolate-...

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January 28, 2009 - 3:36am

Few things feed a hungry football-watching crowd as well as chili. When my husband and I had a bunch of friends over to watch the playoffs a few weeks ago, we made two chili recipes—a vegetarian chili and a hearty, meaty chili. Both chilis were a hit and the ideal meal to serve at this type of gathering because there were only two pots to clean up afterward. Plus chili is loaded with antioxidant-packed vegetables, fiber-rich beans and (if it’s not vegetarian) lean cuts of beef and pork, which makes it a satisfying and healthy meal.

So this weekend for the Super Bowl, I’m going all out with a chili extravaganza.

I’m going to cook vegetarian chili, meaty chili, white...

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January 22, 2009 - 3:36am

I’ll be honest, except for a few fries I’ve stolen from my husband’s late-night McDonald’s stops, I haven’t eaten fast food from a chain restaurant in more than 10 years. Really.

I’m probably in the minority on that one, since millions of people regularly eat fast food. But that number could be on the decline if cities like Los Angeles have their way. Last summer L.A. lawmakers banned fast-food chains from opening new outlets in South L.A. The goals? Reduce obesity and encourage new healthier food choices and food outlets.

Is this bogus or not—what do you think? I, and the other editors at EatingWell, wondered whether people think a ban on new fast-food restaurants would be effective at accomplishing these goals, so we asked three experts and our readers to tell us:...

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