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Friday, August 26, 2011

Meet-and-Three: Raleigh's Mecca

Posted By on Fri, Aug 26, 2011 at 9:38 AM

Mecca, Raleigh’s oldest family-owned restaurant, seems like a tattered, cardigan-wearing grandfather compared to the minimalist hip style of its new down-the-street neighbor, Beasley’s Chicken + Honey, a modern meat-and-three. It is. But well-worn cardigans are cool, and Mecca has managed to keep up with the times. Inside the dark, narrow restaurant, a long counter with red vinyl stools recalls Mecca’s start as a lunch counter that served Raleigh’s downtown workers. At the time it was located on Fayetteville and Hargett streets. Five years later, the entire restaurant and its furniture—dark wooden booths and a mirrored-backed drink counter—moved to the current...

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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Meet and Three: J.C.'s Kitchen in Durham

Posted By on Thu, Aug 11, 2011 at 4:00 PM

Hand lettering on the side of J.C.'s Kitchen advertises the restaurant's weekly specials.J.C. doesn’t cook. That’s no news to the slew of regulars at J.C.’s Kitchen, a home-style restaurant in a buttery yellow building on the corner of Main and Fayetteville streets in Durham. But new folks, explains owner Phyllis Terry, often expect to find the namesake behind the counter. “It’s a form of witnessing to say they stand for Jesus Christ,” Terry says of the restaurant’s initials. The definition, if not explicitly explained, can be inferred from the interior of the building, where Scripture and inspirational plaques adorn the...

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Classroom Allergy alert letter - substitute the allergen your child has

Posted By on Wed, Aug 10, 2011 at 6:08 PM

This is a letter that I formulated some years ago when my son entered preschool and elementary school. It can be tweaked to meet your child's specific needs. If your child's teacher or principal is willing, this can be distributed in weekly folders the first week of school. Your child's name does not have to be identified. Dear Parent, One of the students in your child's class this year has a life-threatening allergy to nuts and peanuts. This means that nuts (pecans, almonds, walnuts, pine nuts, etc.) and peanuts, peanut butter or foods with even the slightest trace of nuts...

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Rice flour Playdough recipe

Posted By on Wed, Aug 10, 2011 at 6:07 PM

Ingredients 1 1/4 cups rice flour1/2 cup salt2 tsp. cream of tartar1 cup water1 tbsp. oil1/4 tsp. vanilla extractFood coloring or sparkles (optional) Mix flour, salt, and cream of tartar in a large pot. Add water and oil. Cook over medium heat until the mixture pulls away from the sides of the pan (about 5 minutes), stirring constantly. Add vanilla extract (this is purely to add aroma). Mix thoroughly. Put playdough on a clean surface. When cool enough to handle, knead lightly. Store in airtight container. Add food coloring to the water to make colored play dough. Add sparkles during...

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Wheat-free, gluten-free Playdough recipe

Posted By on Wed, Aug 10, 2011 at 6:05 PM

2 c. cornstarch1 c. salt1 tbsp. shortening1 1/2 c. water1/2 tbsp of vegetable oil Mix all of the ingredients in a large stockpot and cook over low heat until mixture leaves edge of pan. It will thicken and be a little hard to stir initially. You can add a little water to it. Take it out and knead it while still warm, adding food color, if you like. You may want to wear gloves to keep the dye from staining your hands. Knead until smooth. Store it in a plastic bag or container at room temperature. Source:

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Friday, August 5, 2011

North Carolina ranks 10th in U.S. in number of farmers markets

Posted By on Fri, Aug 5, 2011 at 3:52 PM

North Carolina ranks 10th in the number of farmers markets in the U.S., according to a report released today by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. With 217 farmers markets, N.C. is the only Southern state in the top 10. California ranks first with 729. The numbers are self-reported, said Deputy Agriculture Secretary Kathleen Merrigan, during a media briefing, and thus likely are undercounted. The report was released in conjunction with National Farmers Market week, which runs Aug. 7-13. Nationwide, there are 7,175 farmers markets—an increase of 17 percent over last year. “It goes back to the yearning for the...

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