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Readers share instructions for tasty Thanksgiving treats

Try your hand at reader recipes. Photos: iStockphoto A couple of weeks ago, we asked you, dear readers, to send in your favorite Thanksgiving recipes. We got a smorgasbord of replies, from Dilly Dip to The Best Pressed Pie Crust In the World -- and nary a hint of tryptophan in sight. We've collected your scrumptious ideas here, and welcome more from the rest of you in the comments section below. Bon appetit! Appetizers/Sides/Sauces/Stuffing Dilly Dip Cointreau Cranberry Sauce Sherried Leek and Wild Chanterelle Sauce Cranberry-Orange Relish Tempeh and Wild Rice Stuffing with Toasted Hazelnuts Quinoa Stuffing Entrees/Veggies/Soups Sweet Potatoes …

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Locavore is New Oxford American Dictionary Word of the Year

The word "locavore" has received the esteemed honor of being the New Oxford American Dictionary 2007 Word of the Year. For you non-locavores, the word is defined as "a person who endeavors to eat only locally produced food." It was coined about two years ago by four San Francisco women who popularized the idea of the 100-mile diet. The eco-friendly terminology beat out such worthy contenders as "tase" (to stun with a Taser) and "cougar" (an older woman who romantically pursues younger men).

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A recipe for no-boil pumpkin lasagna

For most of my adult life I've been anti-lasagna. It's not that I refuse to eat it. Quite the reverse! I love to eat lasagna. I just refused to make it. The idea of boiling giant, unwieldy sheets of pasta always got on my nerves. It didn't seem worth it, no matter how delicious the result. For years, a little depiction of a pan of lasagna superimposed with one of those internationally recognized "No!" circles occupied the part of my brain where enthusiasm for making lasagna should reside. Recently, though, I heeded the siren call of no-boil lasagna noodles. It's …

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Frito-Lay hopes to manufacture eco-friendly potato chips

You know it's crunch time when a potato-chip factory goes green. A Frito-Lay factory in Arizona has plans to produce, yes, carbon-neutral potato chips: sliced, fried, seasoned, and bagged in a plant nearly entirely off-grid and powered with renewable fuels. The company's Casa Grande plant will make do in its desert locale by recycling water, and will advertise that it's using solar power to make SunChips. Frito-Lay -- which is owned by PepsiCo, the nation's biggest buyer of renewable-energy credits -- hopes to replicate successful measures in other factories.

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Funny stuff

McSweeney’s satirizes the quest for eco-eats

"Understanding food labels you might encounter at Whole Foods": Natural: Pretty much everything is natural, including this sentence. What makes it natural? The fact that it has the word "natural." Conventional: Conventional says, "I love the system," and we're not even sure why you're shopping here. You don't want paper or plastic -- you have a bag made of the skin of a clubbed infant seal. Local: This is food grown by local farmers who dislike you because you're living in the subdivision that used to be prime farmland owned by their grandparents. Read the rest -- if you like …

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Subsidies and the agony of modern farm policy

A response to my critics

Last week's Victual Reality column startled a lot of sustainable-food advocates, particularly folks not immersed in the details of U.S. farm policy. Subsidies, I argued, do not cause the ravages of industrial agriculture; rather, subsidies are a symptom of a food policy gone wrong. Moreover, I continued, gutting subsidies won't end the ubiquity of cheap and empty calories in the U.S. diet; or stop the devastation of waterways from fertilizer runoff; or make CAFOs unprofitable; or treat any of the other ills of industrial agriculture. I concluded that reckless attempts to end subsidies should not be seen as a panacea, …

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Can industrial agriculture feed the world?

Another study shows organic ag outpacing conventional

Apologists for industrial food production often level what they see as a devastating charge against organic agriculture: that it could never "feed the world.&quot The claim goes like this: industrial ag produces higher yields, and as global population grows, we're going to have to squeeze as much food as possible out of the earth, by any means necessary, to produce enough sustenance. Not so long ago Norman Borlaug, that aging lion of industrial ag, growled: [D]on't tell the world that we can feed the present population without chemical fertilizer. That's when this [pro-organic] misinformation becomes destructive. (Borlaug and his followers …

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Pennsylvania bans hormone- and antibiotic-free labels on dairy products

Pennsylvania agriculture officials have banned the use of hormone- and antibiotic-free labels on dairy products sold in the state, upsetting food-safety advocates and handing the chemically enhanced dairy industry a significant victory. The ruling takes effect Jan. 1 and would affect at least 19 companies that label their milk or other dairy products as having come from cows that are free of hormones, antibiotics, rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone), or rBST (recombinant bovine somatotropin). New Jersey and Ohio are considering similar label bans. Monsanto, the company that manufactures the most common growth hormone given to cows -- among other things …

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Target asks USDA to let it label meat treated with carbon monoxide

Under pressure from Democrats in Congress, Target Corp. has asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to let it attach warning labels to meat it sells that has been treated with carbon monoxide to make it appear fresher than it is. The proposed label reads: "CONSUMER NOTICE: Carbon monoxide has been used to preserve the color of this product. Do not rely on color or the 'use or freeze by' date alone to judge the freshness of the product. For best results please follow the Safe Handling Instructions." In the wake of recent food-safety scares, other companies such as Safeway and …

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Organic whiskey?

My search for organic amber spirits turned up only Scotch

On Grist, we've written about organic beer, organic wine, and organic vodka. But what about those of us whose heritage has left them with a deep and abiding love of the amber spirits? Are there eco versions of Irish, scotch, and bourbon whiskey available to us green-minded drunkards? I decided to investigate a bit, and by that I mean type words into Google. Strangely, I was able to find several brands of organic scotch, but no organic Irish or bourbon. What's up with that? First, I give you Benromach Organic, which purports to be the world's "first bottled Single Malt …

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