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Stone Soup

Guest bloggers from around the world share with Food & Nutrition Magazine.

To Buy Free-Range, or Not to Buy Free-Range

"Free-range." It's a relatively new term; it's slightly misunderstood; and it's used all the time regarding meat and dairy products. How would you define free-range? Is it something you have considered previously when choosing which products to buy at the grocery store or farmers market? Should free-range products be a priority for you and your family?

Food and Fortune for 2013

Growing up in the Carolinas, I always knew what would be on the dinner table come New Year's Day. Without fail, my Grandma would make collard greens, Hoppin' John (field peas and rice), cornbread, and meat (usually ham). With a handful of other superstitions, this traditional Southern meal was eaten for luck and good fortune in the New Year.

Yes, You Can Keep Your New Year's Resolutions!

As the New Year approaches, many of us naturally begin to think about what we would like to do differently next year. I've often waited until December 31st, or even January 1st (and maybe even the 2nd!—to jot down my New Year's goals. From experience, waiting that long can often lead to disaster for falling through as the year moves forward.


Happy "Shogatsu" for Japanese New Year

In Japan, New Year's—shogatsu—is one of the most important holidays of the year. Just like all major holidays for the different cultures and religions out there, Japan has a special food for this holiday. Maybe you have heard of it? Mochi. Yes, I said mochi. Let me guess, you have heard of this!


Love Avocado? Thank Los Aztecas

If you have ever had fresh-made guacamole or chicken tostadas with avocado, you will agree with me: The avocado is unique! This fruit's origin in central Mexico goes back thousands of years, when los Aztecas thought it had aphrodisiac properties.

Get to Know Your Farmer

The "buy local" movement has a lot of momentum and has done great things for local farm economies, not to mention the health benefits of eating food produced in season and from within your own community. But having lived abroad and traveled extensively and thought of all the farmers I know around this globe, I've decided there are merits to being both a "locavore" and a "globavore."

How to Stop Saying "Eat Your Vegetables"

Whether you claim to have a picky eater or not, most kids tend to shy away from vegetables and lean toward starch-heavy foods like pasta, rice, cereals and snacks. After working with many parents on improving their children's diets, here are my top tips and favorite meal ideas using vegetables.


A Healthy Holiday Snack Worth Traveling For

The holidays are a busy time for everyone, and health goals can take a hit. Between the temptations of airport food and road trip drive-thrus, it's hard to stay with your healthy lifestyle while traveling.


How People with Eating Disorders Can Overcome Holiday Stress

The holidays are a wonderful—and wonderfully stressful—time of year for all of us, but the stress is amplified for anyone struggling with an eating disorder. Numerous celebrations with particularly indulgent food and potentially socially stressful situations with friends and family is a lot to manage!


Red and Green Gnocchi for the Holidays

In the midst of all this holiday madness, it's more important than ever to stay healthy with home-cooked, well-balanced meals. With holiday parties, work events, cocktail receptions and family reunions this time of year, it's easy to let healthy cooking fall to the wayside. Who has any more time to spend in the kitchen after baking for the cookie swap and wrapping all those gifts!? One of my favorite meals to make during hectic times is this gnocchi-based dish with beans, tomatoes and greens.


Healthy Holiday Entertaining

This time of year, I love to host a gathering for our closest friends. Here are some tips on what I do to get ready for a party and my favorite recipes for healthy entertaining during the holiday season. There’s no need to get frazzled hosting a party, with a few simple tricks, you can be relaxed and enjoy healthy food with your family and friends.


Get to Know—and Cook!—the Food of the Future

If there is one trendy food that you have to take seriously, it is quinoa. You may already know about this crop and its outstanding nutritional properties—it is considered a "super grain" not only because all of its nutritional benefits, but also because it's easy to cultivate (it grows almost everywhere!). What's more, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations has declared 2013 the "International Year of the Quinoa."


Making My Own Olive Oil

When November comes along, Greece prepare for the olive harvest. My family doesn't live on a farm, but we do have olive groves, and every year we take part in this tradition. And we're not alone; scores of Greeks find themselves in olive groves this time of year. Not only does it bring them back to the land, it provides olive oil, a staple for the average Greek.


What Stone Soup Means to Me

Recently, I've been reading a version of Stone Soup to my 4-year-old girls. It's a story about hungry travelers who encounter a village of stingy folk. They creatively devise a plan to get the townspeople to share their food without even knowing it—all concocted through a "secret recipe" for a dish called Stone Soup. To me this book is not only about sharing, it is also about the discovery of good cuisine—in which the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Rediscovering Fall with Japanese Sweet Potato Soup

When I first moved to Japan in the summer of 2011, I was amazed by all of the different produce around me. I took some time to acquaint myself with the new foods and took cooking classes to learn how to prepare them. Months passed and suddenly I realized that it wasn't summer in Japan anymore; it was fall. Watching the leaves change color sent a rush of fall memories flooding back. You see, I had lived in Las Vegas for 5 years, and then the Azores for a couple of years before Japan. While in these different climates, the essence of fall had escaped me. Now, in Japan, I remembered that, despite the chill in the air, fall was a beautiful season and I really do enjoy it.

Falling in Love with Tomatoes

I grew up hating tomatoes. While I liked ketchup, I would gag at even the thought of biting into even the tiniest piece of tomato. Looking back, I think it was a combination of taste and texture because even the juice would make me shudder. My parents tried to persuage me to give tomatoes a go into my teenage years but they remained firmly at the top of my Food I Hate List. I'm thankful that growing up my Foods I Hate list was very short and that's probably why my parents didn't worry as my diet was otherwise well-rounded.


Local Food in the Las Vegas Desert

We live in the desert, but if you ask many of my fellow Las Vegans what they think of as fall foods, the answers is going to be acorn squash, gala apples and a lot of root vegetables. You see, so many of us flocked here from the Midwest. With this in mind, shopping for seasonal food in Las Vegas can be a conundrum.

Winter Peaches and Local Apple-Zucchini Bars

When I moved to the U.S., I was excited to see beautiful peaches in grocery stores...even in the winter! But then, I bit into one of those winter peaches.


Taste Applesauce for the First Time

One of my favorite fall projects is making homemade applesauce after going apple picking. Trust me when I tell you: Once you've had homemade applesauce, you'll never buy another jar of that yellow stuff in the supermarket again.


Gluten-Free Persimmon Pudding

I knew that, living in Southern California, one could easily be spoiled by the year-round abundance of fresh, in-season fruits and vegetables, but clearly I didn't understand just how lucky we Californians are with our bountiful local harvest. So, this fall, I am happy to spread a little local harvest love with you, by sharing one of my favorite fruits of the season: persimmons.

Crab Cakes Run in the Family

I have always had a love for cooking. I'm lucky that it runs in my family, and I have an abundance of great cooks to inspire me. I don't think I've ever disliked something my dad has made. His soups are to die for along with his perfectly fried chicken. My grandmother can entertain dozens at the drop of a hat and amaze them with her abundant spread of a delicious feast. And my aunt can come up with a mouthwatering meal based solely on the ingredients in the kitchen and pantry—no grocery store trip needed.

Farm-to-Table Frittata

Less than an hour north of Manhattan, I was a girl on a mission. This time, I was going to take the Stone Barns frittata recipe, track down all the ingredients on their farm, purchase them at their outdoor market, and bake it at home.
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Stone Soup

Guest bloggers from around the world share with Food & Nutrition Magazine.

About This Blog

Stone Soup is a guest blog written by members of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Content — including information, recipes and views expressed — is that of the authors and does not reflect the positions or policies of Food & Nutrition Magazine or the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Bloggers are required to pledge they will not write for Stone Soup on topics, companies or trade organization they currently represent or have represented at any time.

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