Europes tastiest cheeses

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/europe-best-cheeses/index.html

(CNN) — It is a truth universally acknowledged that (almost) everyone loves cheese.

And it’s a truth almost as universally acknowledged that Europe makes some of the best.

Here, there are thousand-year-old cheeses. There are cheeses invented centuries ago by monks, cheeses that make cameo appearances in classic literature, and cheeses given intentionally offputting names to encourage people to try them.

There are stinky cheeses, cheeses with added ash, cheeses made in stomach-churning ways, and some of the most expensive cheeses on the planet.

Everyone has their own favorite cheese, of course — but here are 22 of ours.

Grana Padano

Cheaper than parmesan, Grana Padano is the workhorse of Italian pasta dishes.

Cheaper than parmesan, Grana Padano is the workhorse of Italian pasta dishes.

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Everyone knows parmesan, of course, but you might not be so familiar with this workhorse of Italian cheeses, Grana Padano. Like parmesan, it comes from Emilia Romagna in northern Italy; and like parmesan, its nutty taste, hard-flaking texture is perfect for scattering on salad or grating onto pasta. It’s usually a bit cheaper than parmesan, though — in fact, what you might think of as parmesan might actually be grana padano, which has a slightly softer flavor. That doesn’t mean it’s not good, though — try it in chunks, to enjoy the grainy texture, and smear some chutney or fruit jam on top.

Gruyère

Everyone loves sweet-salty gruyere.

Everyone loves sweet-salty gruyere.

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Sweet or savory? With gruyère, you get both — plus a distinctive nuttiness that takes the sweetness down a notch. Made in Switzerland — the village of Gruyères itself enjoys protected status for its cheese — it’s one of Europe’s best loved cheeses, working perfectly with chutney or jam, or incorporated into recipes (even simple ones like a croque monsieur).

Serra da Estrela

Serra de Estrela is so rare that it's officially a protected cheese.

Serra de Estrela is so rare that it’s officially a protected cheese.

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This pungent cheese, beloved of the Portuguese, is classed as an endangered product by the Slow Food movement, and has been given protected status by the EU. That means it can only be made in a small area of the mountainous Serra da Estrela region, and producers have to follow strict procedures. Made during the winter months from sheep’s milk, it’s a spreadable cheese which packs a punch when it comes to flavor.

Halloumi

If you've been to Greece, you've likely eaten grilled halloumi.

If you’ve been to Greece, you’ve likely eaten grilled halloumi.

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If you’ve been to Greece, you’ve likely had the pleasure of eating halloumi: salty, rubbery, squeaky cheese which grills to perfection. Usually blended from sheep and goat milk, halloumi originated in Cyprus, but is now a staple across Greece and the eastern Mediterranean. Grill it till it’s brown and crispy on the outside for the best experience.

Cheddar

Beware cheap and tasteless cheddars. The real thing packs a punch.

Beware cheap and tasteless cheddars. The real thing packs a punch.

barmalini/Adobe Stock

You might think you know cheddar — but the cheap, tasteless stuff you often find in supermarkets is not a patch on the real thing. Sharp but with a sweetness, hard but also crumbly, real cheddar — from the town of the same name in southwest England, is a supremely well-rounded cheese that goes brilliantly on its own, with chutney, in recipes or in a simple grilled sandwich. The best stuff even can have little crystals in — no wonder over half the cheese sold in the UK is cheddar.

Manchego

The longer Manchego is cured, the tastier and more brittle it is.

The longer Manchego is cured, the tastier and more brittle it is.

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This is Spain’s king cheese for a reason: tangy without being offputtingly pungent, hard but with a nicely brittle edge to it, and perfectly paired with membrillo — quince jam. Even Cervantes namechecked it in “Don Quixote,” such is its popularity. Made from unpasteurized sheep’s milk, it’s cured for anything from a couple of months to a couple of years — the longer, the tangier and brittler it gets.

Morbier

Morbier has a streak of ash running through it.

Morbier has a streak of ash running through it.

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The gray streak running through the center makes Morbier one of the prettiest cheeses on our list. In fact, that’s ash — scattered over the first layer before adding the second (originally, it was made with morning and evening milk, though that’s no longer the case). Not that you’ll taste it — Morbier, which has protected status, is soft and creamy, with a slightly bitter aftertaste that stops it from being de trop.

Bitto

Endangered Bitto is one of the priciest cheeses around.

Endangered Bitto is one of the priciest cheeses around.

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This 2,000-year-old cheese, made in the Orobic Alps of northern Italy from cow and goat milk, has “Presidio Slow Food” status, meaning it is an endangered product, which usually costs more to make than the price at which it sells. The last part isn’t necessarily true for Bitto, though, since the good stuff — which can be aged for up to 10 years — can net some of the highest prices on the planet for cheese.

Havarti

Danish Havarti is an excellent grilling cheese.

Danish Havarti is an excellent grilling cheese.

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It’s not just halloumi that grills well. Havarti softens beautifully under a grill, and it also does well as a sliced cheese. Mild in taste, and semi-hard, it’s named after Havartigården, the farm belonging to Hanne Nielsen, who trawled Europe to learn the best cheese-making techniques, before returning to Denmark and working her magic on the local milk.

Wensleydale

Wensleydale with fruits such as blueberries and cranberries is a classic festive eat in the UK.

Wensleydale with fruits such as blueberries and cranberries is a classic festive eat in the UK.

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Cheddar might be the most famous UK cheese, but few Brits would be without Wensleydale. Especially, that is, around Christmas time, when Wensleydale stuffed with cranberries is a must on cheese platters. Made by monks in northern England since the medieval period, its mild flavor and crumbly texture has made it one of the country’s most popular cheeses — it’s even the favorite cheese of cartoon characters Wallace and Gromit.

In Yorkshire (where it’s originally from) Wensleydale can be eaten with fruit cake.

Cabrales

Cabrales is the world's most expensive cheese.

Cabrales is the world’s most expensive cheese.

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There’s blue cheese, and then there’s Cabrales, hailing from Asturias in northern Spain, and aged in caves for up to five months. Particularly pungent — thanks to its blue-green veins, and to the goat milk mixed in with cow and sheep milk — it’s semi-hard, seriously salty, and super delicious. Smear it over a biscuit but savor it — in 2019, a four-pound wheel of cabrales was sold for a whopping $22,890 at auction, making it the world’s most expensive cheese.

Comté

France's sweet Comte has a lot in common with gruyere.

France’s sweet Comte has a lot in common with gruyere.

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If you think this tastes like gruyère, you’d be correct — it’s made in the Franche-Comté region of France, which borders Switzerland, and is also known as Gruyère de Comté. Again, it’s sweet, yet nutty, with a good kick of saltiness, while the consistency is equally hard. Yet devotees of both would suggest that Comté is a fraction creamier. Best try them both together to judge for yourself.

Pecorino romano

Salty pecorino romano is paired with pasta.

Salty pecorino romano is paired with pasta.

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This is another of Italy’s great all-round cheeses. Like parmesan and Grana Padano, it’s often grated to sprinkle on pasta, but where the other two are nutty, Pecorino tastes salty. It can be made in different areas — Sardinia does a great pecorino romano, as well as Lazio, where it originated — but it’s always made from the milk of sheep (pecora) and is always hard, flakey and bursting with saltiness. Rome’s famous pasta dishes gricia and amatriciana both use Pecorino.

Bryndza

Bryndza is often served with dumplings.

Bryndza is often served with dumplings.

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A crumbly, tangy white cheese, Bryndza may be best known as coming from Slovakia, but it is eaten all around the Carpathian Mountains, and its name derives from the Romanian word for cheese. Its slightly sour taste and spreadable nature makes it an excellent topping to dishes — like bryndzové halušky, a popular Slovakian dumplings dish.

Gouda

Gouda is the Netherlands' most famous cheese.

Gouda is the Netherlands’ most famous cheese.

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The Netherlands are known for their cheeses — the weekly cheese market in Alkmaar, which recreates traditional weighing and carrying, is one of the country’s must-see sights. You’ll find the counters there full of Gouda, perhaps the most famous Dutch cheese. A glowing orange color, it’s been made since the medieval period (the first written reference to it is from 1184). It can be aged for anything from a few months to a few years, and while younger cheeses are softer and taste almost sweet, the wheels get harder and nuttier the longer they age.

Callu de Cabrettu

Calle de Cabrettu won't be to everyone's taste.

Calle de Cabrettu won’t be to everyone’s taste.

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You may have heard of Casu Marzu, the world’s most dangerous cheese — but it’s unlikely you’ll be buying it, since its sale is banned. Instead, try this goat’s cheese, also made in Sardinia, which is known for its sheep and shepherds. If you’re squeamish, look away now — the cheese is made from the stomach of a young kid, still full of its mother’s milk. The stomach is tied shut, hung up and left to age naturally, until it becomes a pungent, almost creamy cheese. One for die-hard fans.

Metsovone

Metsovone is a typical Greek cheese.

Metsovone is a typical Greek cheese.

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You know all about feta, of course; now it’s time to try a lesser known Greek cheese. Mesovone hails from the remote north of the country, or more precisely, a mountain town called Metsovo. Made from cow’s milk, either on its own or mixed with a little sheep or goat, it’s semi-hard and naturally smoked. Like that other Greek staple, halloumi, it lends itself particularly well to grilling.

Vieux-Boulogne

This mild-looking cheese is the world's smelliest.

This mild-looking cheese is the world’s smelliest.

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This is said to be the world’s stinkiest cheese — and of course, that’s no mean feat, especially since it comes from France, where pungency is all the rage. Made in the northern coastal Pas-de-Calaise region since the 1980s, it’s unpasteurized and unpressed, making it soft as well as stinky beneath that glowing orange rind. Don’t forget to serve it with a hunk of baguette.

Jarlsberg

Jarlsberg is a corker from Norway.

Jarlsberg is a corker from Norway.

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You might think sweet(ish) cheese with walloping big holes means Switzerland and Switzerland only, but sweet, nutty Jarlsberg is from Norway — although Swiss Emmenthal was introduced to the area in the 19th century, before Jarlsberg came about. It’s also produced under license in Ireland and the US — specifically, Ohio.

Gubbeen

Semi-soft gubbeen can also be smoked, as it is here.

Semi-soft gubbeen can also be smoked, as it is here.

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Ireland’s best loved cheese has a pretty, wrinkled rind, squishy, semi-soft insides — and a mild, though slightly nutty taste. Into something stronger? There’s a smoked version, too. One sweet fact — the rind is washed daily during the curing process.

Puzzone di Moena

This cheese is called "big stinker."

This cheese is called “big stinker.”

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The name means “The big stinker from Moena,” and that should give you an idea of how this, from Trentino in northern Italy, tastes. A traditional cheese of the Ladin people — a separate ethnicity who live in the Dolomites — it was originally popular with agricultural workers who liked it to spice up their limited diet. Originally called Fassa Nostrano, its name was changed in 1974, after a radio broadcast. Now, it’s popular with people who just want to eat it for the name.

Lüneberg

The warm orangy glow that this Austrian cheese gives off comes from the saffron that’s mixed in with the milk, taken from cows grazing in the mountain valleys around Voralberg, in the west of the country. There’s a strong Swiss influence in this area. The result? It tastes rather like a more fragrant, saffron Emmental.

Vegetarian? More like planetarian — how tiny tweaks to your dinner can help save the planet

https://www.cnn.com/2021/12/06/health/eat-less-meat-planetarian-wellness/index.html

But as anyone who is holding on to an unused gym membership can tell you, getting a new habit to stick isn’t that simple. Rather than an all-or-nothing approach, however, the best course of action might be to take it one step (or one meal) at a time.

If you’ve ever tried Meatless Monday, vegan before 6, or any other not-vegan-all-the-time method in an effort to reduce your meat consumption, you’re probably on your way to becoming a planetarian.

Planetarian Life is a website and online community founded by food writer and communications consultant Maggy Keet as a choose-your-own-adventure way of plant-based eating. The flexible strategy she sets forth through recipe “formulas” is intended to help ease people into a more plant-rich diet.

After the birth of her second child in 2019, Keet was motivated to make changes by the thought of what kind of world her children were inheriting. “I was literally awake in the middle of the night having climate anxiety,” she said. “I just brought this person into the world — what does her future look like? What does my son’s future look like?”

Who is a planetarian?

As a member of a food-focused family, Keet grew up with a firsthand knowledge of recipe development and testing. Her mother, Pam Anderson, is a veteran cookbook author and event planner. Together, she and Keet have collaborated on projects over the years, such as the blog and book “Three Many Cooks” and the food media conference The Big Potluck.
Maggy Keet (right), shown with her mom, cookook author Pamela Anderson (left), founded Planetarian Life, an online community that offers recipes and tips on plant-based eating.Maggy Keet (right), shown with her mom, cookook author Pamela Anderson (left), founded Planetarian Life, an online community that offers recipes and tips on plant-based eating.

Keet started the seeds of Planetarian Life based on her experiences doing Meatless Monday, but with fewer restrictions and a larger sense of purpose. “There’s vegetarianism and veganism, but these things don’t describe my why,” she said. “I’m eating this way for the planet.”

That’s the most basic definition of who a planetarian is, according to Keet: someone who is changing the way they eat and live for the good of the Earth.

“I want it to be a very inclusive definition,” she explained. “It’s intentionally vague, instead of making it specifically about reducing meat and dairy consumption — some people aren’t going to give up cheese no matter what.” As Keet notes in the Planetarian Life mission statement: “There is no right or wrong, no judgment, and no ‘good’ or ‘bad’ foods. (This is not a diet!)”

The planetarian approach

Keet acknowledges that “there’s a hurdle to be cleared” to help regular cooks both shift their perspectives and navigate the logistics of getting meals on the table every day. “The challenge to reinvent the way people do mealtime sounds daunting and time-consuming,” she said.

How to stock your kitchen with Mediterranean grocery staplesHow to stock your kitchen with Mediterranean grocery staples

With Planetarian Life, Keet decided to take a small-steps approach. Instead of a straightforward recipe site, she worked with Anderson to create the Capsule Kitchen, a mix-and-match collection of versatile recipe formulas, ingredient bases and how-to tutorials to give plant-curious cooks a lot of points of entry.

Instead of cutting out meat entirely or working with unfamiliar ingredients, planetarian eating works around making small replacements in your usual meals on your own schedule and to your own preferred tastes.

This can be as simple as using chickpeas instead of rotisserie chicken to make chickpea “chicken” salad or cooking a big batch of quinoa to keep on hand for quick skillet vegetable bowls throughout the week.
Chickpea "chicken" salad is one of many ways to replace meat in your weekly food routine.Chickpea "chicken" salad is one of many ways to replace meat in your weekly food routine.

For those who don’t know where to begin, Keet’s adjustable recipes let cooks build with the basics — “assembling food instead of cooking big meals,” she calls it — and give flavor-changing options to make people feel like they are not eating the same thing every day of the week.

“We offer people the root formula, a stripped-down version, and variations to inspire them with the idea that if you have any spices, any type of onion, you can make this recipe,” she said.

Try these three ways to start eating a more plant-rich diet:

  • Make one base recipe, like the Vat of Simple Tomato Sauce or Lentil-Walnut Ground “Meat” that can then be used to make five (or more) different meals down the line.
  • Add in two “essentials” — elements that will help boost the flavor of meals you already can handle making. Shallow-cooked winter greens or quick “roasted” garlic can be stirred into pastas and stews, for example.
  • Start experimenting with variations on a simple formula meal, like the 15-minute skillet bean stew. Make it Mediterranean-, chili- or curry-style.
Maggy Keet makes ahead a base of simple tomato sauce, which can be used to whip up creamy homemade tomato soup. Maggy Keet makes ahead a base of simple tomato sauce, which can be used to whip up creamy homemade tomato soup.

Small changes, big impact

Like compound interest, the incremental tweaks made to familiar meals add up to a bigger lifestyle change over time — and they are easier to stick with than drastic cuts. Because no foods are banned from the planetarian way of eating, it’s up to every individual to take it as far as they want to go.

The best kitchen knife sets of 2021 (CNN Underscored)The best kitchen knife sets of 2021 (CNN Underscored)

Whether your new routine becomes bean tacos on Tuesdays, honey in your tea instead of cane sugar, or dairy-free mac and cheese for Friday family dinner, it’s your decision.

“So much of the narrative about climate action is about sacrifice and reducing and giving things up,” Keet said, but she sees the Planetarian Life strategy as one of addition, not subtraction. “Planetarian Life is a compass, not a map: It orients you in the right direction,” Keet said.

Casey Barber is a food writer, illustrator and photographer; the author of “Pierogi Love: New Takes on an Old-World Comfort Food” and “Classic Snacks Made from Scratch: 70 Homemade Versions of Your Favorite Brand-Name Treats”; and editor of the website Good. Food. Stories.

Zero-sugar Oreos see weak China response despite healthy snacking trend – Reuters

https://www.reuters.com/markets/europe/zero-sugar-oreos-see-weak-china-response-despite-healthy-snacking-trend-2021-12-01/

Dec 1 (Reuters) – Initial reaction from the launch of Oreo Zero sugar-free cookies in China has been disappointing, Mondelez International Inc’s (MDLZ.O) CEO said, underscoring some of the challenges facing the global snack giant as it makes a big push in the market.

Mondelez launched Oreo Zero in China in August, taking a cue from social media trends showing reduced-sugar and sugar-free diets as a key trend, and the limited availability of zero-sugar biscuits in the country.

“The reaction of the consumer has been a little bit disappointing … for one reason or the other, the consumers feel it is not the real thing,” Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dirk Van de Put told Reuters.

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“This indicates the dilemma,” he said. “We can offer the products to the consumer, but it’s not given that the consumer will buy and eat them.”

Mondelez, which also makes Ritz crackers, belVita biscuits, Cadbury chocolates and Trident gum, has set a target to grow Oreo sales by $1 billion by the end of 2023. The brand surpassed $3 billion in global sales in 2019.

Oreo Zero cookies contain maltitol instead of traditional sugars like sucrose and glucose, and the tweak gives a very slight difference in taste that only heavy consumers of regular Oreos would be able to identify, according to the company.

The lukewarm consumer response underscores a challenge for global snack firms with a well-known brand and product. Mondelez varies the amount of sugar it includes in Oreos in different markets around the world. In China, Oreos have less sugar than do Oreos in the United States, which could make for an easier transition to no-sugar cookies.

Chinese consumers, however, remain cautious about packaged foods’ no-sugar claims, said Michael Norris, research and strategy manager at Shanghai-based consultancy AgencyChina.

For example, sugar-free drinks commanded only 1.25% of China’s soft drinks market in 2019, according to a June Dongxing Securities report, though Genki Forest’s sugar-free fizzy drinks and Suntory’s Oolong tea are gaining popularity.

FOR CHINA

Despite weak initial demand, Van de Put said Mondelez will continue to sell Oreo Zero in China, comparing it to Diet Coke, a sugar-free soda which he said also received muted consumer response at first, but has now become one of Coca-Cola’s (KO.N) top selling product globally.

“The consumer’s mind is very difficult to identify in this area,” he said.

Chicago, Illinois-based Mondelez, in an emailed statement, declined to say whether it would sell Oreo Zero globally. Its biscuit sales in China rose by mid-single digits during the third quarter, with Oreos being the “standout performer,” Luca Zaramella, Mondelez’s chief financial officer said on a November conference call.

Mondelez does not disclose sales figures for the new Oreo product.

“Winning in India and China is absolutely critical,” said Van de Put, who became CEO in 2017. Both countries have high rates of diabetes.

Van de Put also told Reuters that he expects Mondelez’s business in Asia, the Middle East and Africa (AMEA) to overtake North America as its second-biggest market within five years. Of Mondelez’s $26.5 billion total revenue in 2020, AMEA accounted for 22%, North America 31%, while Europe accounted for 38%, its annual report showed.

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Reporting by Siddharth Cavale in Bengaluru and Sophie Yu in Beijing
Editing by Nick Zieminski

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

The worlds tastiest dumplings

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/dumplings-worlds-best-35/index.html

(CNN) — How to define a dumpling? In its most basic sense, it’s a pocket of dough filled with some form of savory or sweet stuffing.
And the easy ideas are surely the best, because dumplings are a popular food across the globe: both simple and complex, local and global, adaptable yet fixed in their home regions as cheap, tasty staples to snack on.

CNN’s Pauline Chiou looks at Taiwan’s Din Tai Fung, a family-run restaurant that’s turned into a global dumpling icon.

Here are no fewer than 35 of our favorites around the world to get your taste buds flowing.

Xiaolongbao

Xiaolongbao dumplings contain aspic, and are pinched, instead of folded.

Xiaolongbao dumplings contain aspic, and are pinched, instead of folded.

K.Y. Cheng/South China Morning Post/Getty Images

Served steamed in bamboo baskets, xiaolongbao look different from other types of Chinese dumplings, as the skin is gathered and pinched at the top instead of folded in half.

Xiaolongbao are also unique in that aside from the traditional pork filling, a small piece of aspic is folded into the dumpling, which melts when steamed.

Thanks to the broth, the filling stays moist and flavorful.

Ravioli

Ravioli: Far from a predictable pocket.

Ravioli: Far from a predictable pocket.

svariophoto/Shutterstock

Italy is, of course, the global home of filled pasta, and ravioli is one of its most famous offerings — so famous that it has been exported across the world.

Ravioli — as well as other Italian filled pastas — can be packed with anything from meat to cheese to vegetables, or any combination thereof.

If the processed canned or bagged varieties familiar to lazy college students makes up your only impression of ravioli, rectify that as soon as possible. Preferably with a trip to Rome.

Sichuan spicy wonton

The Sichuan spicy wonton is also known as chao shou.

The Sichuan spicy wonton is also known as chao shou.

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The spicy Sichuan wonton, or chao shou, comes to the table drenched in a spicy chili oil flavored with Sichuan peppercorn and a black vinegar sauce.

The chao shou is boiled and the very best specimens are so slippery they’re nearly impossible to pick up with chopsticks.

The combination of savory meat, smooth wonton skin and tongue-numbing sauce, makes for the most pleasant runny nose you’ve ever had.

Manti

Central Asia's take on East Asian dumplings.

Central Asia’s take on East Asian dumplings.

phanira/Shutterstock

Manti hail from Central Asia — they’re eaten in places such as Turkey, northwestern China, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan — and are very closely related to East Asian variants of dumplings.

Adopted by Turks who traveled across Central Asia during the Mongol Empire, these dumplings can be filled with lamb, beef, quail or chicken — or be left unfilled.

Turkish manti are served with yogurt and spiced with red pepper and melted butter.

Bryndzové halušky

Bryndzové halušky is a national dish in Slovakia.

Bryndzové halušky is a national dish in Slovakia.

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A national dish in Slovakia, bryndzové halušky is a dish of potato dumplings served with bryndza, a Slovakian sheep’s cheese, and sprinkled with bacon or pork fat.

Siomay

Siomay is closely related to the Cantonese dim sum snack, shumai.

Siomay is closely related to the Cantonese dim sum snack, shumai.

Lisa Wiltse/Corbis News/Getty Images

A steamed fish dumpling served with vegetables and peanut sauce, think of siomay as the Indonesian street food equivalent of shumai, traditionally found in Cantonese dim sum restaurants.

Adopted from Chinese Indonesian cuisine, the most popular variant of siomay is found in Bandung. The best way to sample these dumplings is from a street vendor carting a steamer on his bicycle.

Shrimp wonton

A dumpling worth fighting for.

A dumpling worth fighting for.

South China Morning Post/Getty Images

The Hong Kong-style shrimp wonton is a thick dumpling holding shrimp and minced pork. It’s commonly served with thin egg noodles or on its own in a seafood broth.
Many a heated debate over the best shrimp wonton has been heard locally, but there’s never any arguing over its prime place in the Hong Kong diet.

Pierogi

Ready to polish off a pile of these?

Ready to polish off a pile of these?

Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto/Getty Images

Originating in Central and Eastern Europe, pierogi are most commonly thought of as Polish.

These dumplings can be stuffed with potato, minced meat, cheese, fruit or sauerkraut. They’re usually boiled, then pan-fried in butter with onions.

This finishing flourish is the selling point of the dish, adding another layer of flavor.

Modak

Modak is a sweet treat best savored at home.

Modak is a sweet treat best savored at home.

Kalpak Pathak/Hindustan Times/Getty Images

Modak is a sweet from Maharashtra, offered to Lord Ganesha during Ganesh Chathurthi, the festival dedicated to him every year between August and September.

The teardrop-shaped dumpling is kneaded from rice flour and stuffed with coconut and jaggery — an unrefined whole cane sugar.

Dushbara

Dushbara are classic Azerbaijani comfort food.

Dushbara are classic Azerbaijani comfort food.

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These Azerbaijani dumplings are filled with lamb or beef, and usually served in broth.

Rather like the most fiddly of Italian pasta dumplings, they’re folded by hand, a process made more difficult by their small size. Vinegar and garlic sauce tops it off with an extra kick.

Kartoffelknoedel

Carbtastic kartoffelknoedel

Carbtastic kartoffelknoedel

ExQuisine/Adobe Stock

Found across Germany, kartoffelknoedel, or potato dumplings, usually accompany meat dishes.

The Bavarian variant combines both raw and cooked potato, stuffed with a crouton or bread filling.

Coxinha

Coxinha are fried dough balls with shredded chicken inside.

Coxinha are fried dough balls with shredded chicken inside.

Adobe Stock

This is a popular street food in Brazil: effectively chicken dumplings, made from fried dough with shredded chicken in the middle.

They’re shaped in the form of a teardrop, supposedly to resemble a chicken thigh — the dish was originally made from thigh meat. Some add potato to the dough before frying, for an extra carby oomph.

Pelmeni

Pelmeni are anything but sweet.

Pelmeni are anything but sweet.

Gourmet-Vision/imageBROKER/Shutterstock

Pelmeni are Russian dumplings from Siberia, likely introduced to Russian cuisine by the Mongols.

Similar to Chinese jiaozi, Turkish manti and eastern European pierogi, pelmeni are distinguished by the thickness of the dumpling skin.

Pelmeni may be stuffed with anything from meat to mushrooms to cheese, but never with anything sweet.

Dim sim

Don't listen to the haters. Dim sim is a worthy dumpling.

Don’t listen to the haters. Dim sim is a worthy dumpling.

Fairfax Media/Getty Images

Some dumpling purists say that the Australian dim sim is merely a bastardized version of Chinese dumplings.

But we say, if a dumpling has fans standing in line, it’s a worthy dumpling.

Dim sim is a combination of meat or fish mixed with cabbage and enclosed in a wrapper. It may be steamed, deep-fried or barbecued, and is usually much larger than a Chinese dumpling.

Dim sims usually taste gingery — a feature of westernized Chinese cuisine found in Australia, North America and Europe.

Brik

Brik is a spectacularly gooey Tunisian speciality.

Brik is a spectacularly gooey Tunisian speciality.

Adobe Stock

The word “brik” is thought to derive from Turkish, but this is a thoroughly Tunisian dumpling, a deep-fried triangle of deliciousness, often with an egg popped inside for extra gooey flavor. It can be filled with tuna, harissa and parsley, or anything from capers to cheese and meat.

Banh bot loc

You can have your banh bot loc both ways.

You can have your banh bot loc both ways.

Gerald Martineau/The Washington Post/Getty Images

Banh bot loc are Vietnamese pork and shrimp dumplings, with wrappers made from tapioca flour.

When cooked, tapioca flour becomes clear, giving the dumpling its appearance and the wrapper its chewy texture.

There are two major variants: wrapped in banana leaves and steamed, or boiled.

Empanada

Argentina does a great line in empanadas.

Argentina does a great line in empanadas.

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If you’ve ever been to Argentina (or neighboring Latin American countries) you’ll almost certainly have eaten an empanada: pastry stuffed with meat, fish or other fillings, then baked or fried.

In Argentina, the traditional fillings depend on where you are — olives are often worked into the filling in Mendoza, for example. Usually, though, you’ll have a choice of meat — chicken and beef are classics.

Tangyuan

Tangyuan is a favorite treat during the traditional Lantern Festival.

Tangyuan is a favorite treat during the traditional Lantern Festival.

Peng hua/Imaginechina/AP

Tangyuan is a Chinese dessert — sticky balls made from glutinous rice flour containing a sweet filling, such as ground peanuts or black sesame paste, and served in a bowl of sweet soup or rolled in ground peanuts.

Some tangyuan are served as smaller, unfilled rice balls in a soup made from cane sugar.

In dessert shop chains all over Hong Kong, tangyuan are served with ice cream, topped with a drizzle of syrup.

Chicken and dumplings

Chicken and dumplings is a prime comfort food in the USA.

Chicken and dumplings is a prime comfort food in the USA.

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Chicken and dumplings is probably the ultimate in Southern comfort food in the United States.

Chicken soup is a dish found all over the world, but the addition of dumplings gives the soup an extra something.

American dumplings are usually a mix of flour, vegetable shortening and milk — in this case, dropped directly into the chicken broth. The broth may be a clear chicken soup, or thickened with flour or cream.

Kimchi mandu

Kimchi wrapped up in a dumpling? Yes, please.

Kimchi wrapped up in a dumpling? Yes, please.

Jonathan Wong/South China Morning Post/Getty Images

Mandu, the Korean take on dumplings, are more closely related to manti found in Central Asian cuisine than to Chinese or Japanese dumplings.
Mandu are often folded into circular shapes, a technique rarely found in Chinese cuisine.
As ubiquitous as kimchi is in Korea, it was probably inevitable that somewhere along the way someone would chop up kimchi and stick it in a dumpling.

Canederli

Italians flock to Alto Adige for traditional canederli.

Italians flock to Alto Adige for traditional canederli.

Adobe Stock

When winter nights are closing in and the temperatures are dropping, what could be better than a golf ball-sized dumpling made from bread, stuffed with things like speck (a type of cured ham), cheese and onion, washed down with a tanker of beer?

Italians flock to Alto Adige, the autonomous region in the north of the country, which was part of Austrian Tyrol until being annexed to Italy under Fascism, for these traditional Tyrolean dumplings. Eat them in broth, or order a plateful (some restaurants do canederli “flights” of different fillings). Just be warned — these are huge, and you’ll likely find your eyes are far bigger than your stomach.

Bawan

Bawan dumplings are steamed and then deep fried.

Bawan dumplings are steamed and then deep fried.

RomixImage/Adobe Stock

Bawan is a Taiwanese street snack commonly found in night markets around the island.

A translucent wrapper made from rice flour, corn starch and sweet potato starch holds a stuffing of pork, bamboo shoots and mushrooms. Bawan is served with a sweet and savory sauce.

The dumplings are steamed, then deep-fried to keep the wrapper from drying out.

Momo

Endless filling possibilities.

Endless filling possibilities.

Deb Lindsey For The Washington Post/Getty Images

Momo are dumplings found in northern Indian, Nepali and Tibetan cuisine. They may be filled with meat, vegetables or cheese, and are usually served with a tomato-based dipping sauce.
Enterprising Nepali vendors in Kathmandu have also taken to filling momos with Snickers and Mars bars, especially in areas frequented by tourists.

Uszka

Uzka are usually served in soup.

Uzka are usually served in soup.

Adobe Stock

Uszka are similar to Polish pierogi — the word “uszka” means “little ears” in Polish. They’re

usually filled with minced meat and mushrooms and put in borscht soup.

Uszka stuffed with bolete mushrooms and chopped onions without meat are served in clear borscht for Christmas Eve meals in Poland.

Gyoza

Gyoza are a kin to Chinese pot stickers.

Gyoza are a kin to Chinese pot stickers.

Natasha Breen/REDA&CO/Universal Images Group/Getty Images

Related to Chinese pot stickers, Japanese gyoza tend to be made with thinner wrappers and filled with minced pork.

Frozen gyoza are found in most grocery stores all over the world, but the best restaurants for gyoza always turn out to be holes-in-the-wall outside of Tokyo subway stations.

Crab rangoon

For the love of fried cheese.

For the love of fried cheese.

Modesto Bee/Tribune News Service/MCT/Getty Images

Found on Chinese takeout menus in the United States, crab rangoon are deep-fried dumplings served as a side dish.

They’re stuffed with cream cheese and imitation crab meat made from a fish-based paste.

It may not be an authentic Chinese dish, but love of fried cheese crosses cultures.

Teochew fun gor

Teochew fun gor is stuffed with a delicious mix of shrim, pork, veggies and peanuts.

Teochew fun gor is stuffed with a delicious mix of shrim, pork, veggies and peanuts.

Adobe Stock

Not your typical pork-filled dumpling, the Teochew fun gor is usually packed with peanuts, chives, dried shrimp, pork, radish, mushrooms and cilantro.

The wrapper is made of a combination of wheat flour, tapioca flour, corn starch and potato starch, giving the fun gor its translucent appearance.

Teochew fun gor is most popular in Cantonese dim sum restaurants.

Samosa

Samosas are a tasty triangular treat.

Samosas are a tasty triangular treat.

Deb Lindsey for the Washington Post/Getty Images

Usually triangular in shape, samosas are a deep-fried snack popular in south and southeast Asia.

They may be filled with a variety of stuffings, including potato, onions, peas, lentils and ground lamb.

Khinkali

A dumpling of one's one.

A dumpling of one’s one.

EyesWideOpen/Getty Images

Straddling Eastern Europe, Russia and Central Asia, it’s not surprising that Georgia has its own dumpling.
The khinkali resembles the xiaolongbao. It’s formed by gathering the pleats of the wrapper at the top and stuffed with spiced beef and pork.

Khinkali are usually served with coarse ground black pepper.

Gnocchi

Gnocchi, a dumpling heavyweight.

Gnocchi, a dumpling heavyweight.

Jonathan Wiggs/The Boston Globe/Getty Images

Gnocchi are small, thick pasta shapes that can be made from semolina flour, potato, flour, eggs, cheese — or a combination of the lot. They originated in northern Italy, though are eaten throughout the country today, with recipes varying from region to region.

Gnocchi are prepared like other pasta dishes, and may be served in tomato-based sauces, pesto sauces or with any other sauce you might find on pasta.

Daifuku

The perfect gift.

The perfect gift.

John S Lander/LightRocket/Getty Images

Duty-free shops in Japanese airports are packed with what look like mountains of pre-wrapped boxes of Japanese treats. Many of these boxes actually contain daifuku.

They are a type of mochi (glutinous rice cakes), only they’re stuffed — usually with sticky-sweet red azuki.

Daifuku are popular as gifts in Japan — specialty stores that create a dazzling array of varieties move countless boxes over holiday periods.

Amish apple dumpling

Travel to Amish Pennsylvania and you'll come across delicious apple dumplings.

Travel to Amish Pennsylvania and you’ll come across delicious apple dumplings.

DiAnna Paulk/Adobe Stock

The apple dumpling is popular across the United States, and common among the Amish, especially in and around Pennsylvania.

A peeled and cored apple is stuffed with cinnamon and sugar, then wrapped in a piece of dough and baked until the apple becomes tender. The pairing of the apple dumpling, fresh from the oven, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top makes for a divine dessert.

Ravioli del plin

Ravioli del plin is a super-thin filled pasta from Piedmont.

Ravioli del plin is a super-thin filled pasta from Piedmont.

Paolo Bernardotti/Adobe Stock

Every region of Italy produces its own filled pasta, of course, but these, from southern Piedmont, are particularly prized. Much smaller than regular ravioli — they’re barely bigger than Bolognese tortellini — they’re filled with either a meat mix (which often includes rabbit) and served with a glaze of meaty sauce, or contain a vegetable mix, often cabbage with rice.

As well as being small in size, the pasta is also rolled super thin, so the dumplings seem to melt in the mouth. “Plin” isn’t the place where they came from; the word derives from a local dialect word for “pinch,” as the pockets are pinched together by hand.

Shish barak

Shish barak are lamb dumplings served with yoghurt.

Shish barak are lamb dumplings served with yoghurt.

Adobe Stock

This is the ultimate Lebanese comfort food: lamb dumplings, similar to manti, and served drenched in yoghurt — usually goat, rather than cow, to give the flavor a bit more bang.

The lamb is mixed with pine nuts and spices before being wrapped in the dough, and slow-cooked in the yohurt with water. It’s labor-intensive — requiring constant stirring, to keep the consistency.

Ashak

Ashak, from Afghanistan, are vegetarian.

Ashak, from Afghanistan, are vegetarian.

Julia Buckley

These vegetarian dumplings hail from Afghanistan, and are also similar to manti. Recipes vary, but the stalwart is some kind of green vegetable inside — which can be chives, scallions, or celery, as they make it in Venice’s refugee-run Orient Experience restaurant.

Ashak are normally topped with a stewy lentil kind of sauce, and yogurt.

One of Jussie Smollett’s Attackers Tells Court It Was All Staged

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/12/01/arts/television/jussie-smollett-attacker-testimony.html

Jussie Smollett, frustrated by what he saw as a muted reaction to a death threat he had received in the mail, enlisted a friend in 2019 to stage a fake attack that would grab public attention, the friend testified on Wednesday at the actor’s trial.

Abimbola Osundairo, the younger of the two brothers who have said they took part in what they describe as a hoax, said the strange request came after Mr. Smollett showed him an image of a threatening letter he had received. It featured a red stick figure hanging from a noose, a gun pointed at the figure, and the acronym MAGA on it.

Mr. Smollett later arranged a meeting with him, Mr. Osundairo said, after sending him a text message in which Mr. Smollett said he needed help “on the low.” At the meeting they discussed how the television studio behind “Empire,” the show they both worked on, was not taking the letter seriously, Mr. Osundairo told the court.

“He said he wanted me to beat him up,” Mr. Osundairo said. “I looked puzzled and then he explained he wanted me to fake beat him up.”

Mr. Osundairo testified during the third day of Mr. Smollett’s trial on charges he filed a false police report about the attack, a case that largely relies on the accounts of Mr. Osundairo and his brother, Olabinjo Osundairo, who say Mr. Smollett devised the attack.

Mr. Smollett has denied staging the Jan. 29 attack and his lawyers have suggested the brothers have fabricated the account to avoid prosecution.

“He wanted me to tussle and throw him to the ground and give him a bruise while my brother Ola would pour bleach on him and put a rope around him and then we would run away,” Abimbola Osundairo testified.

Mr. Osundairo, 28, said his friendship with the actor started in 2017 and grew to a place where Mr. Osundairo would refer to Mr. Smollett as his “big brother.” Mr. Osundairo said Mr. Smollett had helped him to secure a job as a stand-in for more prominent actors on “Empire,” a gesture that Mr. Osundairo said left him feeling “indebted” to Mr. Smollett. He said he ended up standing in for Mr. Smollett’s character’s love interest on the show.

It is unclear whether the prosecutors will also seek testimony from Mr. Osundairo’s older brother, Olabinjo, 30, who also appeared on “Empire” and, though he was not as close to Mr. Smollett, has told investigators he was brought in to assist with the attack. Olabinjo Osundairo is on a list of potential witnesses.

The brothers have told the police that on the day before the attack was supposed to take place, Mr. Smollett drove them around the Streeterville neighborhood of Chicago, where he lived, showing them where he wanted it to occur. The brothers say Mr. Smollett gave them a $100 bill to buy supplies for the attack, including ski masks, a rope and a red hat meant to indicate that the attackers were supporters of former President Donald J. Trump.

The special prosecutor handling the case, Daniel K. Webb, said earlier in the trial that on Jan. 29, the brothers waited for Mr. Smollett near the proposed spot — in subzero temperatures — and when the actor arrived, they beat him lightly, put the rope around his neck and poured bleach on him from a hot sauce bottle.

The defense has in its opening statement and cross-examination sought to undermine the brothers’ accounts. Mr. Smollett’s lead lawyer, Nenye Uche, called the brothers “self-confessed attackers” and said both men “did not like” Mr. Smollett.

Mr. Uche said that a $3,500 check that Mr. Smollett made out to Abimbola Osundairo was for help with physical training for Mr. Smollett’s music video — not payment for helping with the attack as prosecutors contend. (Mr. Osundairo testified that at the time of the reported attack he had been helping Mr. Smollett with diet and fitness plans to help him prepare for an upcoming music video, but that he intended to do the work for free because they were friends.)

The defense has also said that Mr. Smollett’s text message asking for help “on the low” was in reference to getting herbal steroids from Nigeria, to which the brothers were soon traveling.

On Tuesday, Mr. Uche suggested in his questioning of a detective, Michael Theis, who investigated Mr. Smollett’s hate crime report, that the police had not properly looked into accusations that Olabinjo Osundairo had a history of homophobia.

Prosecutors sought on Wednesday to blunt that suggested motivation. Abimbola Osundairo was asked whether the fact that Mr. Smollett is gay had affected their friendship, and he said it had not. Mr. Osundairo said at one point that he had visited a gay bathhouse with Mr. Smollett in Chicago.

The defense has also focused on guns and drugs found in the brothers’ home after their arrest in February 2019. But Detective Theis said Abimbola Osundairo had a valid license to own the guns as well as proof of ownership. He said the police found a “very small amount” of cocaine in a bag inside the lining of a safe.

(Olabinjo Osundairo was convicted of aggravated battery several years ago and is not allowed to own a gun.)

Two additional Chicago detectives testified Wednesday, including Kimberly Murray, who said she had interviewed Mr. Smollett in the hospital a few hours after the attack. He told her, she said, that he was walking toward the lobby of his apartment talking on the phone to his agent when he heard one of his attackers yell out racist and homophobic slurs at him.

She testified that Mr. Smollett told her that he was struck on the left side of the face and kicked in his back and rib area; he said he felt a tugging around his neck, before the attackers fled. The actor told her that as he left the scene he noticed a rope “fastened like a noose” around his neck and that then, when he was back in his apartment, he noticed that his sweatshirt smelled like bleach.

Detective Murray told the court that in the hospital interview, Mr. Smollett described one of his attackers as a white man wearing a ski mask. (He said he could tell he was white from the exposed skin around his eyes and around the bridge of his nose).

A second detective, Robert Graves, testified Wednesday that Mr. Smollett was interviewed a couple of weeks after the attack and described one of his attackers as “pale-skinned,” not white, as he had said previously.

“I confronted him and reminded him that I was in the hospital and in the drive-through in which he described the attacker as a male white and not as pale skinned,” Detective Graves said, adding that Mr. Smollett responded that the attacker had “acted like he was white.”

The detectives testified that Mr. Smollett declined to provide his cellphone, medical records and a saliva swab to investigators. Detective Graves said the police wanted the phone to help establish a timeline and to look into a threatening anonymous call that Mr. Smollett said he had received two days earlier, but Mr. Smollett refused.

During the defense’s cross-examination of Detective Graves, Mr. Smollett’s lawyer, Mr. Uche, said that because Mr. Smollett was a celebrity, he did not want to share his private information.

Celebrity surgeon Dr. Oz jumps into Pennsylvania U.S. Senate contest – Reuters

https://www.reuters.com/world/us/celebrity-surgeon-dr-oz-jumps-into-pennsylvania-us-senate-contest-2021-11-30/

WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) – Celebrity heart surgeon Dr. Mehmet Oz on Tuesday said he would mount a Republican bid for a U.S. Senate seat for Pennsylvania, shaking up what could be one of the most competitive races in next year’s congressional elections.

Oz, who hosts the syndicated “The Dr. Oz Show,” brings substantial name recognition to a wide-open Nov. 8, 2022, contest that could determine control of the Senate and the fate of Democratic President Joe Biden’s agenda.

Biden narrowly won Pennsylvania in the 2020 election but Republicans made gains in the state legislature. Many observers expect next year’s race to be a toss-up following the retirement of Republican Senator Pat Toomey.

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Toomey was one of seven Republican senators who voted to convict former President Donald Trump in January following Trump’s impeachment.

Oz rose to fame shocking audiences with show-and-tell displays of decaying lungs and rotting livers, telling viewers they should take care of themselves.

Mehmet Oz, Host of the Dr. Oz Show and Professor of Surgery, Columbia University, speaks during the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., May 3, 2017. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
Mehmet Oz, Host of the Dr. Oz Show and Professor of Surgery, Columbia University, speaks during the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., May 3, 2017. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

His public image took a blow in 2014, however, when he told lawmakers probing bogus diet product ads that some of the products promoted on his show lacked “scientific muster.” Senators at the hearing focused on green coffee bean extract, a dietary supplement Oz touted in 2012 as a “miracle.”

In a statement on Tuesday, Oz said he was running as a “conservative Republican” and described himself as a top-notch surgeon and health care advocate.

He enters the race days after another Republican candidate, military veteran Sean Parnell, who had received Trump’s endorsement, ended his own campaign. Parnell dropped out following a court ruling that outlined allegations of domestic abuse against his estranged wife, which Parnell has denied.

The Republican field also includes real estate developer Jeff Bartos.

Democrats hold slim majorities in the U.S. Congress ahead of next November’s elections. The Senate is split 50-50 between Democrats and Republicans with Vice President Kamala Harris casting tie-breaking votes for Biden’s party.

Democrats have yet to pick a candidate for the Pennsylvania Senate race, with Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman, a progressive, and U.S. Representative Conor Lamb, a moderate, seen as front-runners for the party nomination.

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Reporting by Jason Lange; Editing by Scott Malone and David Gregorio

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Holmes recounts sexual, emotional abuse by Theranos exec Balwani

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2021/11/holmes-recounts-sexual-emotional-abuse-by-theranos-exec-balwani/

Elizabeth Holmes, founder of Theranos Inc., arrives at federal court in San Jose, Calif., on Tuesday, November 23, 2021.
Enlarge / Elizabeth Holmes, founder of Theranos Inc., arrives at federal court in San Jose, Calif., on Tuesday, November 23, 2021.

In a day of intense and emotional testimony, Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes told the court of the sexual, physical, and emotional abuse she said she suffered at the hands of company president and chief operating officer Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani and others.

Balwani was Holmes’ boyfriend for more than a decade, much of it during their time leading Theranos, the failed blood-testing startup. The pair hid their relationship from investors and Theranos employees. Balwani has pleaded not guilty to the same fraud and conspiracy charges Holmes faces. His trial begins next year.

Holmes’ attorneys said she met Balwani in 2002 on a language-immersion trip in China. She was 18 years old at the time and a senior in high school. He was in his late 30s and pursuing an MBA at the University of California, Berkeley.

The next year, Holmes attended Stanford University to study chemical engineering. On the stand, she said she was raped during her first year at college, an experience that pushed her to leave school and start Theranos.

“I was questioning how I was going to be able to process that experience and what I wanted to do with my life. And I decided that I was going to build a life by building this company,” she told the court.

Holmes dropped out of Stanford in 2004 to focus on Theranos. Shortly thereafter, she reached out to Balwani and told him about her sexual assault at Stanford. “He said that I was safe now that I had met him,” she testified.

“Astonished by my mediocrity”

Holmes and Balwani started dating in 2005 and soon moved in together. By all accounts, their relationship was intense, and Holmes testified yesterday that Balwani soon grew abusive. He told her how to behave, criticized her tone of voice, and told her she “came across as a little girl and needed to be more serious and pointed and not be giddy in my interactions.” Balwani even went so far as to prescribe her diet and schedule, and he left her handwritten notes, one of which read, “I do not react. I am always proactive. I know the outcome of every encounter. I do not hesitate.”

“He told me he didn’t know what I was doing in business, that my convictions were wrong,” Holmes testified. 

“He was astonished by my mediocrity,” she said. 

“I needed to kill the person I was,” Holmes said Balwani told her, “to become the ‘new Elizabeth.’”

Later in court, Holmes testified that Balwani would become sexually abusive when he became angry. “He would get very angry with me, and then he would sometimes come upstairs in our bedroom and he would force me to have sex with him when I didn’t want to because he wanted me to know that he still loved me,” she said.

NHS to set up 15 special clinics in England for severely obese children

https://amp.theguardian.com/society/2021/nov/16/nhs-15-special-clinics-england-severely-obese-children

Obesity

More than 1,000 children a year to receive tailored treatment as part of pilot early intervention scheme

Tue 16 Nov 2021 01.00 EST

Specialist NHS clinics for severely obese children and young people are to be set up in England as part of an early intervention scheme to help tackle an issue costing about £6bn a year.

A pilot of 15 clinics across the country will provide more than 1,000 children a year, aged between two and 18, specialist treatment to support weight loss.

Tailored care packages developed with their family will include diet plans, mental health treatment and coaching, with early action aimed at preventing long-term health problems such as type 2 diabetes, health attacks, strokes and cancer.

The rollout of the pilot delivers on the NHS Long Term Plan ambition to treat children for severe complications related to their obesity, avoiding the need for more invasive treatment.

Obesity affects one in five children in the UK and can increase the likelihood of a child developing serious health issues such as type 2 diabetes, liver conditions and early heart disease. Children who are severely obese can also develop difficulties such as breathing problems, sleep issues and mental health problems.

In England, the number of children living with obesity doubles from the start of primary school to the end of primary school – with latest data showing that one-fifth of children aged 10-11 are obese in England.

At the new clinics, group sessions will be provided with a full clinical team, including support from dieticians, psychologists, specialist nurses, social workers, youth workers and a paediatrician. The services will identify the factors causing obesity in children, considering their mental and physical health.

Amanda Pritchard, the chief executive of NHS England, said: “The pandemic has shone a harsh light on obesity – with many vulnerable young people struggling with weight gain during the pandemic. Left unchecked, obesity can have other very serious consequences, ranging from diabetes to cancer.”

The new services “are a landmark moment” in efforts to help children and young people “lead longer, healthier and happier lives”, she said.

The pilot is based on an existing service in Bristol Royal hospital for Children, which has been supporting children in the area since 2018. The Care of Childhood Obesity (CoCO) clinic has treated thousands of children from across the south-west since its launch.

Julian Hamilton-Shield, a professor of diabetes and metabolic endocrinology at the Bristol hospital, said: “Using a team of experts from many disciplines, including specialist dieticians, social support workers, and mental health professionals, we can pinpoint the exact causes of weight gain and create tailored treatment plans for each child to help accelerate weight loss and address the complications caused.

“The creation of these 15 new clinics across the country demonstrate the NHS’s commitment to help tackle obesity and provide more local access to specialist weight management support for children in England.”

Available evidence shows younger generations are becoming obese at earlier ages and staying obese for longer, putting themselves at greater risk of 13 different types of cancer, heart attacks, strokes and type 2 diabetes. Children living in the most deprived areas are more than twice as likely to be obese than those living in the least deprived areas.

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Small cuts in air traffic would level off global heating caused by flying – study

https://amp.theguardian.com/world/2021/nov/04/small-cuts-in-air-traffic-would-level-off-global-heating-caused-by-flying-study

Air transport

Annual cuts of 2.5% would keep aviation’s contribution to global warming at about 0.04C, research suggests

A modest diet in our flying habits would be enough to level off the global heating caused by the aviation industry. That’s the surprising conclusion from a study, which also warns that if the aviation industry continues to grow at current rates then it will be responsible for around nearly 0.1C of heating by 2050.

Taking a flight adds to global heating in two ways. The first is from the direct effect of burning jet fuel and producing carbon dioxide, which remains in the atmosphere. The second is from indirect effects caused by tailpipe emissions in the upper atmosphere, resulting in cirrus clouds that trap additional heat and complex chemical reactions that alter the balance of greenhouse gases such as ozone and methane.

Working out how much global heating aircraft cause is complicated because carbon dioxide hangs around for thousands of years (meaning a flight taken in 1950 is still contributing to global heating today), while the indirect effects (clouds, contrails and the like) are much shorter lived – usually less than a year.

Milan Kloewer, from the University of Oxford, and colleagues from Manchester Metropoliton University took both the direct and indirect heating effects of aircraft into account to model the aviation industry’s contribution to global heating up to the year 2050. They found that to date aircraft are responsible for 0.04C of global heating: about 4% of the 1.2C temperature increase humans have caused since the Industrial Revolution. If aviation continues to grow at about 3% a year then it will have caused 0.09C of heating by 2050.

But their results, which are published in Environmental Research Letters, also show that if we were to reduce air traffic by just 2.5% each year (resulting in about 50% less air traffic by 2050 compared with 2019) then the aviation industry’s contribution to global warming would remain about 0.04C, resulting in a relatively insignificant amount of additional heating between now and 2050.

This is because more than half the warming caused by aircraft comes from the indirect effects – contrails, clouds and chemistry. And the fall in these indirect effects would balance out the warming caused by the continued rise in carbon dioxide.

“Any growth in aviation emissions has a disproportionate impact, causing lots of warming,” said Prof Myles Allen at the University of Oxford, a co-author of the study. “But any decline also has a disproportionate impact in the other direction. So the good news is that we don’t actually need to all stop flying immediately to stop aviation from causing further global warming – but we do clearly need a fundamental change in direction now, and radical innovation in the future.”

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I warn you – this column contains filth | Stewart Lee

https://amp.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/oct/31/i-warn-you-this-column-contains-filth-sewage

Opinion

In the week we host Cop26, our outmoded sewage system is causing an even bigger stink

Sun 31 Oct 2021 06.00 EDT

The majestic shores and tinkling streams of our island kingdom are engulfed by filth. I am self-constipating to stem the tide of sewage, reducing my own filth output by eliminating fibre and water from my diet, and eating only dairy products, and so should you if you are a true patriot. Laurence Fox has already switched to a diet consisting solely of shirred eggs, baked in his own individual porcelain ramekins, while his Reform UK co-face, Richard Tice, has vowed to eat only bar-snack pickled eggs from “a rightwing pub, with free speech and rightwing comedy, and only British food, and no vaccine passports, and no masks”, until the filth tide retreats.

But mass public self-induced constipation is not a long-term answer to decades of chronic underinvestment in filth infrastructure by privatised water companies. I am, however, already seeing massive personal savings on my toilet roll and Toilet Duck expenditure. In fact, my toilet is so rarely used now I am thinking of encouraging an actual duck to live in it, though gathering the eggs might be a challenge.

Normally, a national filth engulfment would be a handy metaphor for political corruption. But we have reckoned without Boris Johnson’s Covid-Brexit government’s ongoing talent for making nightmare reality and puns about “this septic isle” aren’t up to the task of addressing the magnitude of their complicit criminality. I sit down to a breakfast of six coddled eggs and, keen to complete my column so I can prepare a light lunch of 30 blockage-inducing persimmon fruits, ponder the irony of the situation.

In the week we host the Cop26 climate catastrophe conference, on the success of which no less than the future of all life on Earth depends, Johnson dismissed his own government’s recycling policy as useless to a class of bewildered schoolchildren; Shipley’s Conservative MP, Philip Davies, said our attempts to reduce Britain’s emissions are “utterly futile, virtue signalling gesture politics”, drawing emaciated polar bears and dead Northumbrian seabirds into a culture war against the imagined hessian-munchers of north London; a clockwork contrarian called Mike Graham, on the Conservatives’ client radio station talkRadio, appeared to suggest that concrete, like trees, could be “grown”; and 268 Conservative MPs voted to block a Lords’ amendment aimed at preventing water companies from discharging 3.1m hours’ worth of sewage, based on last year’s filthometer readings, into filthy Brexit Britain’s filth-filled seas and rivers. Was it only in May 2018 that Michael Gove sniffily declared we could have “higher environmental standards outside the EU”? Was it only that year that Johnson stated he was “leading the way in protecting the world’s oceans”? Were they lying? God forbid!

Apparently, Brexit Britain’s broken supply lines mean the water purification chemicals aren’t getting through. But principally it appears that water companies can’t be expected to pay the £150bn needed to fix their outmoded sewerage system, which they have run into the ground since 1991 while paying £57bn to shareholders, so they have to funnel the filth-spill into our rivers and seas. You don’t have to be Joseph Bazalgette, whose public sewerage system emerged from the Great Stink of 1858, to see that decades of investment, rather than decades of dividends, could probably have averted the problem; you don’t even have to be his great-great- grandson, Peter Bazalgette, who pumped the cultural sewage of the Dutch reality TV show Big Brother into our homes, to recognise the asset-degrading actions of the water companies as evidence of a corrupt kleptocracy; you probably don’t even have to be his other great-great-grandson, Edward Bazalgette, who played guitar on the Vapors’ 1980 sensitively Asian styled song Turning Japanese, to know that the moral response to the filth crisis is to make the water companies correct their neglect and not to pass the costs on to the consumer. And yet the Conservatives’ justification for supporting the ongoing filth-discharge was that as the customer will have to pay for the sewage system upgrade it’s best not to bother with it after all.

I gobble down my persimmons and head out into Dalston high road to find more. Even the most fashionable north London health food shops seem to have no persimmons left, but is it evidence of Brexit shortages or of patriots attempting to solidify their bowels? Hopefully, the delegates at the Cop26 won’t find out about the British filth crisis or Johnson’s latest gaffes. But, given that we recently learned the Irish border agreement, in his oven-ready Brexit deal, was laid down with the premeditated intent of being broken, who among the hopeful international idiots coming to Glasgow to save the planet would trust either Brexit Britain’s words or deeds.

Meanwhile, in September 2020, an unnamed purchaser imported 30,000 tonnes of Dutch sewage sludge, containing Dutch human waste, to spread on British arable land, a process illegal in Holland itself. It appears Brexit Britain’s farmers could become the grateful recipients of millions of tonnes of European excrement. Unlike many moaning Remoaners, I graciously accept Brexit was the will of the people, but we need joined-up thinking to make it the unqualified success it can be. Why are we discharging our own British excrement directly into our British waterways at the same time as buying European excrement to spread on our land? Shouldn’t we just pull over, whenever we feel the urge, and defecate patriotically into our own British fields al fresco? Nothing speaks of Brexit’s sunny uplands more movingly than the image of Ann Widdecombe, with her bloomers round her ankles in a Kent market garden, shatting on to some strawberries. I can’t find any more persimmons anyway and eggs make me sick. Gardyloo!

Rescheduled 2022 dates of Stewart’s 2020 tour are on sale; stewartlee.co.uk/live-dates/ He also appears with director Michael Cumming at live screenings of King Rocker, their documentary about Birmingham’s post-punk survivors the Nightingales, in cinemas in London, Bristol, Birmingham, Liverpool and Leeds in November and December linktr.ee/kingrocker

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