Happy Chinese New Year! Year of the Rooster

Chinese New Year Lion Dance

Chinese New Year starts with the New Moon on the first day of the lunar New Year. The Asian New Year can fall anywhere between late January and the middle of February, due to cyclical lunar dating. On the Western calendar, the start of this New Year falls on January 28, 2017, The Year of the Rooster. On the Chinese calendar, 2017 is Lunar Year 4712.

As always, the New Year is marked with symbols of hope and prosperity, and of course, sumptuous food. For good luck and good fortune—or just plain good fun—here are some customs and foods to celebrate the coming year.

Savor the Flavor with these Comforting Main Dish Recipes

Chicken Pot Pie

Depending on where you live, winter weather can be downright bone-chilling or it can simply be cooler than normal. Either way, the term “winter” often conjures up visions of hearty, homemade comfort foods that are filling and savory. Think chili and cornbread. Beef stroganoff. Macaroni and cheese. Chicken and dumplings. You get the drift.

While we’re not going to offer up recipes for the afore-mentioned dishes in this particular blog, here are four others that should whet your appetite. Not only are they downright delicious, they also are loaded with umami rich foods, which makes them so savory, you will want to make them again and again.

Is One of Your New Year’s Resolutions “To Lose Weight”? Try Umami.

new year resolutions

It’s almost January, the beginning of another dieting season. It’s the time of year when many people who are determined to lose weight try something drastic (like a quick weight loss scheme) and soon start fretting about not breaking their 2017 New Year’s resolution. So it’s not surprising that weight loss tips, tricks and techniques abound right about now.

If you are among those who are serious about losing some weight (or don’t want to gain weight), here’s an innovative piece of advice you may not have heard or read about, but you really should consider: eat more foods that provide the umami taste. Umami, the taste of savory, is one of the five basic tastes. It signals that a dish contains protein. Umami is what makes savory foods so delicious.

Beyond Pleasure: The Importance of Umami as a Taste

Holiday Party Appetizers

During (and before) the holidays I find myself poring over cooking magazines and food blogs in search of amazing recipes to serve at my annual party and special holiday meals. I want every meal to be packed with dishes that tantalize the taste buds. The holidays are all about maximizing the pleasure we get from eating. But even aside from holiday time, modern humans are largely a lucky species. We frequently have the luxury of choosing and preparing foods based on what tastes good to us. Indeed, surveys and studies find time after time that, although hunger drives the desire to eat, taste is the primary characteristic by which we select what we eat.

Perfect Savory Recipes for Holiday Gatherings

holiday appetizers

If you are stuck in a rut of preparing the same recipes for holiday meals and parties, do we ever have some suggestions for you!

Here you will find five menu ideas that should get those taste buds watering! All of these recipes fall under the category of ‘savory’ as they are made with umami-rich ingredients like meat, cheese and mushrooms.