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LETTER SEPTEMBER 2017 Meet the Men Behind Your Meals
www.OctoberKitchen.com | 860-533-0588 | 309 Green Rd Manchester, CT 06042
How My Mom (and PBS) Inspired Me to Cook COOKING UP EXCELLENCE
In August of 1997, I was on vacation in the little beach community of Ogunquit, Maine. For most people, a vacation means a break from the news, but one Sunday, I desperately needed to track down a copy of the New York Times. I was barely six years out of culinary school and the executive chef at a small fine dining restaurant. Shortly before my trip, renowned critic Ruth Reichl ate at the restaurant, and her experience would be published in the restaurant review section that day. I tore open the paper when I finally got my hands on it. “EXCELLENT,” her review declared. Holy Moses! At 27, I stood at a pinnacle in my career. My journey to “EXCELLENT” started at my mother’s side. As a child, I would pull out the bottom drawer so that I could step up to peer over the kitchen counter to see what she was making. I can still remember watching her roll out dough for homemade English muffins. That said, while my mother was a fair cook, her recipes were limited. She mastered about 15 dishes and would rotate through them every month when she cooked family dinner. When I discovered Julia Child and the Frugal Gourmet on PBS, my culinary world expanded. I’d always loved to eat and was enthralled by the process of preparing a meal to be enjoyed. I fell in love with
cooking and realized that if I ever wanted to eat something like what I saw on those shows, I needed to make it myself. As luck would have it, my mom went back to work around this time and was more than happy to let me have the reins in the kitchen. At 13 years old, I started to cook for my whole family. My mom would get me the ingredients I needed, and I would get dinner on the table. One of the first meals I ever served my family was a Yankee pot roast recipe I found in an issue of Yankee Magazine. It turned out really well, and I still have a version of it on the menu today. My passion for cooking only grew from there. I never excelled in sports or clubs, but in high school, I took to home economics like a fish to water. In my sophomore year, I gained early entry into the Culinary Magnet School Program in Wethersfield, and my life has revolved around the culinary arts ever since. It’s been 20 years since I read Ruth Reichl’s review, and while it was a proud moment, I’m happy to report it wasn’t the only highlight of my career. There would be plenty more to keep, and each new triumph has been delicious.
“I fell in love with cooking and realized if I ever
wanted to eat something like what I saw on those shows, I needed to make it myself.”
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“It’s not going to be like last year!”
lunches, balanced with fruits and vegetables, to give them the energy and brainpower they need to make it through the day. Establish a Staging Area Designate a central spot in your home to store everything school related. This includes backpacks, shoes, upcoming outfits, and the family calendar. Keep the space free of clutter and any nonschool items. The kids can even help organize everything. Ask Your Kids About Their Worries Now is the perfect time to talk to your kids about any worries they have for the coming year. Discuss bullying, new teachers, making friends, getting to class on time, and anything else that may be weighing them down. Together, you can make a plan to address concerns before they become major problems. The back-to-school season can be hectic, but the whole year doesn’t have to be like that. With these tips in mind, your whole family can get off on the right foot and make the grade!
Before the Bell Rings
On the eve of the first day of school, parents everywhere rally their families and hope to finally unlock the secrets to an easy school year. It can be a challenge, but there are some things parents can do to help themselves and their kids enjoy a smooth transition into the school year. Set Up the New Sleep Routine in Advance If possible, establish bedtimes and wake-up calls two weeks prior to the first day of school. It will be difficult for kids to go from sleeping in to waking up before the sun, but being on the right sleep schedule will give you one less thing to worry about.
Back-to-School Tips: Parents Edition
Plan Healthy Lunches and Snacks Most school lunches are notoriously unhealthy, and poor nutrition has been linked to low grades and bad behavior. Send your kids to school with protein-rich snacks and
What’s on the Menu?
Diabetic-Friendly Meal Options Now Available
The meals from October Kitchen cater to a wide variety of dietary restrictions, so everyone can enjoy a dish best suited to their health needs. Our gourmet frozen dinner specials outshine anything you can find in the freezer section of your grocery store. Every entree, from the Maple Balsamic Glazed Salmon to our Chicken Cordon Bleu, is listed next to symbols signifying dietary category. Recently, a blue capital “D” joined these categories. So, what’s the “D” stand for? “Delicious,” of course! And also “diabetic-friendly.” Meals in this category are based on a maximum five-count guideline for carbohydrate counting in diabetic meal planning. Five carbohydrate servings is 75 grams of carbs and an easily managed number. Carbohydrate counting can make meal planning easier! Let’s say your dinner contains 5 carbohydrate servings, or 75 grams of carbohydrates. A frozen dinner of Beef Shepherd’s Pie contains 35 grams of carbohydrates. Instead of calculating how many exchanges that converts to, figure out how many more grams of carbohydrates you need to meet your 75-gram total. We established a threshold for carbs at 75 grams to facilitate optimal diabetes management, and many of our meals are at a four count or less. This new category joins our many other health-conscious options, like wheat-free, sodium sensitive, heart-friendly, and vegetarian. Remember to always follow your doctors’ and diabetes management partners’ recommendations. 2 www.OctoberKitchen.com
Bottom of the Bottle The Dangers of Drug Combinations
____________________ Write your name here and fax the completed puzzle to 860-533-0585, send it via empty delivery box, or bring it to the shop and receive 10 percent off your next order . ( First Last ) Prescription drug use is on the rise in the United States. Dima M. Qato, an associate professor of pharmacy systems, outcomes, and policies at the University of Illinois, interviewed more than 2,000 people across the country, between the ages of 62 and 85. In six years, the percentage of older adults taking at least five prescriptions drugs rose from 30 percent to 36 percent. In the same study, researchers determined the percentage of Americans taking over-the-counter medication, such as the generic version of the commonly prescribed Zocor, doubled. Meanwhile, use of dietary supplements rose from 52 to 63 percent in the same timespan. They credit these increases to changing Medicare laws, new treatment guidelines, and the increased availability of generic drugs. This fact, in and of itself, isn’t a cause for concern. The danger comes when individuals taking many prescriptions mix them with over-the-counter medications and dietary supplements.
Qato and her team identified 15 potentially dangerous combinations of commonly used medications (prescribed and over-the-counter) and supplements. These combinations can undermine the effectiveness of prescription drugs, most commonly those taken for heart health. Furthermore, some drug combinations can lead to dangerous conditions, including bleeding, renal failure, heart attacks, or strokes. “The problem isn’t just with older adults,” Qato cautions. “It can happen to anyone using multiple medications.” It is important for patients to tell their doctor about all the pills they take, including generics bought at the pharmacy and that bottle of omega-3 fish oil from the health food store. It’s only through communication that patients can avoid making a deadly mistake.
“I am so thankful to October Kitchen for making my busy life easier when it comes to cooking. I have been a returning customer for five years. The food is delicious, and my mind is at ease knowing I am eating healthy, nutritious meals. I
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am lucky not to have food allergies, but the chef caters to your every need; all you need to do is ask. Will return soon.” –CAROLE L.
“This place is a godsend for anyone who wants to eat healthy. I tell people how wonderful it is all the time. They will answer any question you
have and only use the freshest ingredients. All the nutritional information is listed.”
PENCILS SCHOOL SCISSORS SEPTEMBER
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309 Green Rd. Manchester, CT 06042 INSIDE
Cooking Up Excellence
Back-to-School Tips for Parents
Introducing New Diabetic Meal Options
Are Your Daily Drug Habits a Dangerous Combination?
Should We ‘Help’ Each Other?
I do not help my wife with her children, because they are also my children, and my job is to be a father. I do not help my wife to wash or fold clothes, because the clothes are also mine. I am not a help at home; I am part of the house. And as for praise, I asked my friend when it was the last time he thanked his wife after she finished cleaning the house, washing clothes, changing bedsheets, or cooking. Does that seem absurd to you? Does that seem strange? When you, once in a lifetime, cleaned the floor, you expected a prize for excellence. Why? Praise her as you wanted to be praised, in the same way, with the same intensity. Give her a hand and behave like a true companion, not as a guest who only comes to eat, sleep, and bathe. The author may be a mystery, but their story rings true. Couples should not help each other. We must work together as equal partners in love and life.
Perhaps you’ve heard this story before. It recently went viral online and inspired people to look at the responsibilities of couples and housework in a new light. A friend came to my house, and we talked about life. At some point in the conversation, I said, “I need to wash the dishes. I’ll be right back.” “It’s nice you help your wife,” he said. “I do not help because when I do, my wife does not praise me. Last week, I washed the floor and got no thanks.”
I Don’t Help My Wife and Neither Should You
I explained that I did not “help” my wife. My wife does not need help; she needs a partner. It is not a “help” to do household chores.
I do not help my wife clean the house, because I live here, too.
I do not help my wife cook, because I also want to eat.
I do not help my wife wash the dishes, because I also use those dishes.
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