FOOD DIGEST What's new!

The 100 Calorie Packs from Nabisco are a real treat and packaged smartly for people on the go. Each package offers a 100-calorie amount of Nabisco snacks such as Oreo Thin Crisps, Kraft Cheese Nips and mixed berry fruit snacks. The packs contain no trans fats. Cookie versions are tasty, although the cream filling that regular Oreos have is missing. A box of 6 packages is $2.70.

Swiss Valley Farms has introduced of a full line of chunk cheese under the Swiss Valley Farms brand name. The line offers 19 varieties including Swiss, Cheddar, Colby, Monterey Jack, Muenster, Garden vegetable and Provolone. Package sizes include 8 ounce, 16 ounce and 5 pound deli loaves.

Vegetarian potluck

The Vegetarian Information Group of Rochester will have a potluck picnic at 7 p.m. Aug. 18 at East-Silver Lake Pavilion. People will begin assembling at 6:45 p.m.

Participants are asked to bring a vegetarians dish, place setting, a beverage and the recipe for the dish. The group request no meat, chicken or fish and encourages dairy-free and egg-free dishes.


Free stuff

The California Pear Advisory Board is offering consumers a brochure, "All Our Best." It is available by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope to: "All Our Best" Pear Brochure 1521 "I" St. Sacramento, CA 95814.

To help people lose weight with soup, Campbell's is offering a booklet, "Campbell's Soup for Life Plan," designed by company nutrition experts and culinary professionals. It provides flexible menu plans for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks based on a 1,200-calorie-a-day weight-loss diet while providing additions for those with increased calorie needs. The colorful 40-page booklet can be ordered at or by writing to Campbell Soup for Life Plan Booklet, P.O. Box 1154, Grand Rapids, Minn. 55745-1154.

More chicken

It seems like we can never have enough good chicken ideas these days. If you're always on the lookout for something different, pick up a copy of Better Homes and Gardens' magazine-style publication "All Time Favorites." It features 104 creations ranging from soups and sandwiches to salads, skillet dishes and more. Also included is a section on basics -- purchasing, handling and storing chicken. It's available at newsstands and supermarkets for $4.99.

Get ready, get set

The wait is nearly over: Soon we'll be overrun with local tomatoes. What to do with that glorious bounty? "The Tomato Festival Cookbook" by Lawrence Davis-Hollander, offers 150 ways -- focusing on heir-loom tomatoes -- to help solve such a wonderful problem. Chilled soup of Creole tomatoes with tapenade; West African chicken, peanut and tomato stew; and tomato, orange and ginger chutney are just three examples of the international flavor. Canning recipes are there too.

Food Q &; A


Q: What can I substitute for buttermilk in a recipe? I don't want to buy a quart every time I need a small amount.

A: Powdered buttermilk is available in the baking aisle of most supermarkets. Or make your own sour milk as a substitute. Warm one cup of milk to 70 degrees (do not boil). Stir in 1 tablespoon vinegar. Let stand about 5 minutes, until milk begins to curdle.

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