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Celebrity chefs give tips for making the perfect gravy

Thanksgiving dinner is nothing without a boat of steaming gravy to smother it in, but somehow the sauce is the hardest thing to make. It can be too lumpy or runny or flavorless — but not this year. Look no further than your favorite celebrity chefs for foolproof tips and recipes on how to master their techniques and make a perfect gravy every time. And if there is one thing they all agree on, it’s that you have to make plenty of gravy — it’s the best part! Alton Brown Alton Brown’s adds a little something special to his Best Gravy Ever — wine. And not even white, but rather, a red wine that adds a rich flavor to his hearty gravy recipe. In a large roasting pan he deglazes the bottom with 24 oz. of low sodium chicken broth and 8 oz. of red wine. As it boils and reduces, scrape the bottom to…

The most likely places you’ll catch a cold this winter

The cold and flu are a harsh reality of winter for many. Between October and March, about 5 to 20 percent of the U.S. population comes down with the flu, according to the CDC. Adults average about 2-3 colds per year and children have even more. While we all know to wash our hands frequently and eat a healthy diet, to stay healthy it also helps to know the places where we’re most likely to pick up cold and flu causing bacteria and viruses in the first place. Both cold and flu are contagious infections of the respiratory tract. Coughs and headaches are common to both. Congestion, sore throat and sneezing are associated with colds, while the flu brings tiredness, a high fever and an overall feeling of weakness in the body.  A cold is milder than the flu, and one can’t turn into the other because they are completely different virus. What they…

Places to pick your own apples and pumpkins near Pittsburgh

Well, that was fast. Summer is officially over, and soon the air will become chilly and night longer. But while you were out having fun in the sun, local farmers were tending to their pumpkin patches and apple orchards, so they’re ready to meet the demand of the new season. If you live in the Pittsburgh area, you’re lucky to have a handful of places to pick your own (PYO) apples and pumpkins right from the farm. Many of the pick your own below farms are hosting fall festivals too, so be sure to call ahead or visit online if you want to attend on a day where your family can participate in other fall favorite activities like hayrides and corn mazes — usually held on weekends through the end of October. So grab a jug of apple cider, and head out in to a local farm for some old fashioned fall…

Why we celebrate Oktoberfest in September

Every year millions of people around the world wonder why the German tradition known as Oktoberfest is celebrated primarily in the month of September. The annual celebration is best known for its beer, food and general celebration of German culture. But given the name, shouldn’t the shindig primarily take place in its namesake month? The official Oktoberfest website explains. The first Oktoberfest was held in 1810, with a one-day horse-race held as part of the wedding festivities for Bavarian King Ludwig I and his wife, Theresie. The crowd liked it so much, that it became an annual event, eventually developing into the world of marching bands, sausages and colorfully-dressed beer maidens we know today. But over the decades, the horse-race disappeared, and the event grew to more than two weeks long — stretching the event into mid-October. Since fall can be quite cold in Bavaria, even snowy, a decision was made to start the festivities earlier…

Best Oktoberfest Celebrations in the U.S.

For beer drinkers, the month of September brings the year’s main event: Oktoberfest (save questions about the name for another article). The time-honored annual fall tradition of debauchery begins this Saturday. Of course, Munich is the original Oktoberfest. More than 6 million people from around the world decend on the city every year to guzzle nearly 2 million gallons of beer. But for those of us who can’t get away overseas, there are plenty of ways to celebrate the German festival here at home. More than 46 million German-Americans — the largest single ethnic group — have gifted us with plenty of places to help them partake in their wunderbar celebration. To help you decide where to celebrate Stateside, WalletHub has crunched data to create a list of the top 100 best cities for Oktoberfest celebrations. The data crunchers used 23 indicators including sheer number of breweries and beer gardens, overall safety and walkability, average price of beer,…

Food-themed board games perfect for cooler days indoors

In a world where seemingly all things are digital, it might seem quaint to think of pulling a dusty board game from the closet shelf. But the old fashioned board game business is actually booming. Big-name retailer Target, alone, launched 70 exclusive board games this past summer, and board game bars, cafés and clubs are popping up everywhere, providing an outlet for enthusiasts to play others outside their usual social circles. The “Board Game” group on the social app Meetup has more than 1.8 million members in nearly 4,000 groups on six continents. Because Everybody Craves is all about eating, here are 10 board games any food fanatic will love. Scrabble Cooking Players can earn bonus points for coming up with words that relate to food. Tasty abbreviations and celebrity chef names also count in this remake of a classic board game. Foodie Fight An addictive trivia game that allows foodies…

20 delicious ways to eat apple pie this fall

If you like to bake, the first signs of cool, crisp fall air will have you running back inside to your beloved kitchen. Like most Americans, an apple pie is a must-make, but this year, consider mixing things up a bit with one of these creative takes on the classic apple pie.  Whether it’s apple pie cupcakes, cookies or sangria, you really can’t go wrong with the flavors of apple and cinnamon. SKILLET APPLE PIE BISCUITS Warm and gooey. Just like the original. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/404127766545571672/ Mini apple pies in apples When all you want is the juicy fruit filling and a teeny bit of crust. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/79376012155057357/ Apple Pie Protein smoothie You’re going to need something to wash down all that apple pie. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/AR59x7aW8EoOwipTjR8b2vxrgJ2RzFqE5RUMWmGq9Vw8Y1DY2z8iImw/ https://www.pinterest.com/pin/265993921717590793/ Apple pie sangria Maybe you prefer to wash it down with something a little more adult. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/181481059962210953/ apple pie monkey bread Apple pie you could eat with your…

Back-to-school food safety for parents, kids

Chances are you’ll worry more about finding foods for your child’s lunchbox that they’ll actually eat, than you will about whether those foods will be safe to eat by the time they get there. More than 48 million Americans will become stricken with food poisoning this year. That’s nearly 1 in every six people resulting in 128,000 hospitalizations and more than 3000 deaths. Children are the most vulnerable to foodborne illnesses, so it’s worth taking extra precautions when packing their lunches. “One thing parents might want to do before school starts is pack a simple lunch with a cold source, and leave it on the counter,” said Marianne H. Gravely, Senior Technical Information Specialist of the Food Safety Education Staff at the USDA. “Wait the amount of time the child has to wait until lunch, and see if it’s still cold.” This activity gets the kids involved in their lunch planning but it also starts to teach them to become aware of the…

A third of Americans have missed a football game due to heavy tailgating

On bright and brisk falls mornings all over the country, you’ll find Americans gearing up for their favorite pastime — tailgating. While football, of course, is the main event, the tailgating subculture has become just as much of a mainstay of Saturday or Sunday mornings as the game itself. New research from YouGov revels an inside look at what Americans are drinking, their habits and how many participate. About 77% of respondents said they drink alcohol before the event, but 21% said they preferred to stay sober. One third of Americans said they drink alcohol at every tailgate they attend a game. College fans said that Bud Light, Samuel Adams, Blue Moon and Corona are the beers most likely to make an appearance in their game day coolers, while Jack Daniels, Baileys and Smirnoff are the preferred tailgating liquors. Frito-Lay’s chips, grilled Johnsonville sausages and cans of Campbells soup are the preferred snacks…

10 recipes for when it’s too hot out to cook

Maybe it’s too hot outside to fire up the skillet, or maybe it’s busy back to school season — either way, there seems to always be a reason not to cook. But don’t fret. Here are a few incredible recipes for when time is at a premium, but taste is still what you crave. No cook dinner recipes: Easy Vegan Spring Rolls A big dose of veggies in your diet goes down easy along with the perfect peanut dipping sauce. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/145241156707084471/ Mediterranean Tuna Lettuce Wraps A simple, no heat recipe perfect for long summer days. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/271201208787853399/ AVOCADO STRAWBERRY SPINACH WRAPS WITH POPPY SEED DRESSING There is nothing not to love about this incredible ingredient combo. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/4574037104887733/ Zucchini Noodles and Veggies Keep it light with these raw zucchini noodles. The vegetable packs tons of hydration so you’ll be sneaking more water into your diet — always a good thing in the heat. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/144115256804496683/…