Time to get raw

I was at the Sarasota Film Festival a few weeks ago to screen my short film, and came across a feature documentary in competition called Supercharge Me: 30 Days Raw. The film is director Jenna Norwood's answer to Morgan Spurlock's seminal Supersize Me, but in it she embarks on a diet considerably less familiar to most of us than what's available on McDonald's Super Value Menu: that of the raw foodist. Now, we're all familiar with the basic tenets of vegeterianism, and some of us with what it means to be a vegan. But what exactly does raw mean? Well, to put it simply: not cooked. Here's the reasoning, at least according to Wikipedia:

* Raw foods have higher nutrient values than foods which have been cooked.

* Raw foods contain enzymes which greatly aid in their own digestion, freeing the body's own enzymes to do the work unimpeded of regulating all the body's many metabolic processes. Heating food degrades or destroys these enzymes in food, putting the onus on the body's own enzyme production.
* Raw foods contain bacteria and other micro-organisms that stimulate the immune system and enhance digestion by populating the digestive tract with beneficial flora.

Yum ... beneficial digestive tract flora. Of course, as with any radical diet, there's considerable controversy out there: some say that certain raw vegetables, when consumed in great quantities, can be toxic; others argue that humans have been cooking food with fire for at least 350,000 years, which negates any claim that cooked food is somehow unnatural. Regardless, I've been considering trying it for a week just to see if it has any effect on my energy level. If I do, I'll certainly blog about it. What do you guys think?

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The Simple Way to Reheat Your French Fries and Not Have Them Turn Into a Soggy Mess
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Some restaurant dishes are made to be doggy-bagged and reheated in the microwave the next day. Not French fries: The more crispy and delectable they are when they first arrive on your table, the more of a soggy disappointment they’ll be when you try to revive them at home. But as The Kitchn recently shared, there’s a secret to making leftover fries you’ll actually enjoy eating.

The key is to avoid the microwave altogether. Much of the appeal of fries comes from their crunchy, golden-brown exterior and their creamy potato center. This texture contrast is achieved by deep-frying, and all it takes is a few rotations around a microwave to melt it away. As the fries heat up, they create moisture, transforming all those lovely crispy parts into a flabby mess.

If you want your fries to maintain their crunch, you need to recreate the conditions they were cooked in initially. Set a large pan filled with about 2 tablespoons of oil for every 1 cup of fries you want to cook over medium-high heat. When you see the oil start to shimmer, add the fries in a single layer. After about a minute, flip them over and allow them to cook for half a minute to a minute longer.

By heating up fries with oil in a skillet, you produce something called the Maillard Reaction: This happens when high heat transforms proteins and sugars in food, creating the browning effect that gives fried foods their sought-after color, texture, and taste.

After your fries are nice and crisp, pull them out of the pan with tongs or a spatula, set them on a paper towel to absorb excess oil, and sprinkle them with salt. Now all you need is a perfect burger to feel like you’re eating a restaurant-quality meal at home.

[h/t The Kitchn]

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Bone Collector
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