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Sunday Food: Ham

By: dakine01 Monday September 12, 2011 9:00 am

When I was a child, I learned very early that there were two types of hams, “city” hams and “country” hams. My grandfather had cured country hams, serving the ham in my grandparents restaurant. Then my uncle took over the ham business and grew it a bit larger. In last week’s Sunday Food post on Lard, I mentioned the “hog killin’” when I was ten. The primary reason for the hog killin’ was to get the hams that Uncle Howard cured and sold although I think that year may have been the last year he raised and killed his own hogs, later turning to Kahn’s Meats in Cincinnati for the hams.

country ham

fried Country Ham slice

Country hams are, or at least were, a big business in Kentucky. My uncle showed his hams at the Kentucky State Fair each year and in I think it was 1974, won the Grand Champion. There is a Country Ham Breakfast each year at the Fair where that year’s Grand Champion ham is auctioned for charity. If I remember correctly, the year Uncle Howard won it, his ham set a then record by selling for $10K. Last year’s Grand Champion sold for $350K. The current record looks to be $600K (2011).

Smithfield Ham is probably the most widely known of country hams. I have ordered from Broadbent Hams and Meacham Hams as they are both Kentucky based and online.

City hams were all the other, non-country hams – at least as far as my father was concerned. While country hams usually have a sharp, salty taste, the city hams (“deli hams” as a variant) are the cold cut, lunch counter hams. Or the canned hams. They are nowhere near as salty as the country hams.

Which is best? Well, the country ham is generally much more expensive but for folks who love the country ham, it is well worth the price. A one pound package of “Danish ham” at the grocery may run $3 to $4 depending on the brand.

This is a Google search for cooking country ham that covers from individual slices to the whole ham. This Google search covers cooking all types of hams.

As with every other food item, your choice of hams is dependent on your own taste and experience. I will admit that as a child, I was not all that fond of country ham, preferring instead, slices of “city” ham on crackers. Nowadays, as an adult, I do like country ham sandwiches (especially on salt risen toast) or the traditional southern breakfast of fried country ham, grits, eggs, and red-eye gravy. If I do not have any country ham available, I am perfectly fine eating a slice or two of pan broiled ham at breakfast or dinner either one. Most grocery stores have cooked and uncooked hams as well as individual slices of varying thickness and as always, it is all a matter of your individual taste.


Video: Congressman 9/11 Disclosure Bombshell- “release the Kracken”

By: jbade

The infamous, redacted, 28 pages of the 9/11 commission propaganda report. One of the co-chairs of the committee refused to sign off on the commission’s report because these 28 pages were redacted.  That chairs issue has always been Saudi involvement in 9/11. His concerns were directed at the funding sources involved in 9/11. The report concluded that the financing issue was not relevant. Not relevant!  Yes, and not a peep from the sheeple.

I have always been perplexed and dismayed by the reaction of the  American people as it related to their being presented with the magic bullet theory. How could they have been such sheeple to accept that theory? On an issue with such mass ramifications. I found things like Dan Rather, all news people, making knowingly false statements that would dramatically mislead the populace. It was more understandable how they were misled.

We have the internet.

On 9/11 the american people’s interest in issues like- Who financed 9/11?  is non-existent, it just is not important- but it is. That same Saudi mechanism is fueling the violence and instability in Syria/Iraq. It is the same terrorist  funding mechanism that the government holds out as the need to let your roads, schools and standard of living deteriorate because of  need to fight the terrorists.

On second thought, your right, it should not bother me that the sheep are grazing so peacefully and they should not be bothered with a feeling of  any civic duty to understand that the issue exists. As a part of the solution rather than part of the problem thing.

I would like to see that 28 pages, but then again, I’m not a sheeple.


Want Open Borders? Elect a Republican President

By: jbade
Rally For Immigration Reform

Rally For Immigration Reform

Historically the parties have passed unpopular legislation by placing the dissenting party in the presidency. The list is long.

Bill Clinton passed welfare reform – to save it, deregulated Wall Street for Banksters in the name of regulating, sold out Democrat principles of defending workers - as he supported them by hopping in wall street’s back pocket, trying to take down medicare and Social Security, something dems claim to oppose, dramatic surveillance escalation, assassinating Americans without due process. Etc., etc.

Bush passed PHARMA’s  prescription drug benefit as entitlement, something the GOP opposes. the ownership society HUD, etc., increased funding for schools through No child left behind, etc., etc.

You see most of the unpopular legislation get passed by the party who, “supposedly”, is opposed to such legislation,who should be the defender of whatever the unpopular legislation is meant to destroy/facilitate.

Immigration did not pass under Bush despite his efforts. It does not alter the fact that it will need to be a Republican president who “brings his party along” on the issue of immigration.

Only rarely have the American people risen up and successfully opposed the establishment  on an issue that they so deeply desire, open borders. The vilification of anyone who challenges the concept of open borders is from the establishment’s handbook.  The big media, big business, big labor, big politicians, big environmentalists, big churches, big immigrant right’s groups, etc., etc. demand reform, open borders, now.

When has the establishment ever advocated in your best interests? Just on this issue of immigration.

File Under Negativism

By: littler

Once in a while (full disclosure: quite often) I find myself getting hung up on a song for its message, its resonance with my own particular experience of life in these United States. This is one of those songs, by the late great Mr. Gadget.

So, then, here’s a question: Which song has a similar effect upon you? Also, what would you consider to be an antidote? I’m not sure I have one of those, myself, but this song by Rocket From The Tombs would have to come close:

Summer Signs Confirmed

By: Deena Stryker Saturday July 12, 2014 11:15 am

As hooligans in Jerusalem shout anti-Arab slogans and threaten individual Arabs, giving rise to the word ‘Zio-fascists’, Israel prepares to invade Gaza yet again, while Kiev shells villages and towns as it prepares to besiege Eastern Ukraine’s two largest cities. The Gaza invasion is clearly an effort to torpedo the Palestinian unity government, while the Ukraine offensive is just as clearly a US-led attempt to draw Russia into a shooting war with NATO. Both illustrate the increasingly fascistic nature of globalization. The question is whether Europe, which has known the horrors of fascism up close, will continue to go along with Washington’s and Tel Aviv’s plans.BRICS Business Council, 20 Aug 2013

A hopeful sign that indeed it may not, is the French Finance Minister daring to say out loud what many leaders have been thinking: that it’s time for the world to stop using the dollar as its reserve currency. His remark came after a major French bank received a humungous fine for infringing US sanctions. Until now, only the BRICS countries were talking about the need for a different reserve currency, and it was easy to brush them off as incapable of making this happen. But when the second most economically important country in the EU talks this way, something is afoot. The fact that it is not Germany, Europe’s biggest economy, that made the remark is irrelevant: there has always been a division of labor within the duo.

For its part, Germany is taking steps to counter U.S. snooping and spying. As the Guardian reported Tuesday, Angela Merkel considers that: “If the allegations (about Germans working for the CIA) are true, it would be … a clear contradiction to what I consider to be trusting cooperation between agencies and partners.” And today Des Spiegel writes: “In what amounts to a diplomatic earthquake, Berlin has asked the country’s top CIA official to leave Germany.” This unprecedented move will further strain ties with Washington, which have never been the same since revelations last year that the NSA was wire-tapping Germans – including the Chancellor herself.

Even more significantly, Merkel’s declaration was made during her seventh official trip to Beijing, where economic agreements signed and the two countries compared notes the United States.

I began writing this article Thursday, and yesterday much of it was confirmed:

As President Obama is attacked for supposed inaction abroad and overreach at home, (Speaker of the House John Boehner plans to sue him over his use of executive actions), President Putin turns up in Cuba on the first leg of a trip that will also take him to Argentina and Brazil. Russia is canceling 90% of Cuba’s debt, with the 10% remaining to be invested in joint development projects, and will drill for oil. One news source announced that former Soviet bases in Cuba are to be reactivated, to be verified.  In any case, the comment that Putin excels at the judoist art of waiting patiently for one split-second right moment to act, is borne out:

On the eve of the BRICS summit in the Brazilian city of Fortaleza, where the location of the BRICS Development Bank will be decided, the Russian President announced that Russia would back Brazil’s bid for a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council. Time recently commented that Putin allowed himself to be distracted during the Sochi Games from the birthing crisis in Ukraine.  It seems he will be making up for it Sunday during the World Cup finals, when he is expected to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

It’s no coincidence that while Russia and Brazil take steps to liberate themselves from American electronic systems, Germany, recognizing the power shift that is under way, moves closer to both – as well as to China.

Put all these developments together and you cannot deny that a new play is premiering on the world stage: After pretending for seventy years that it had eradicated fascism, with communism as the remaining foe of ‘democratic’ nations, Washington is using Islamic ‘terrorism’ (anything ranging from the Shi’a state of Iran to Hamas but not including ISIS, which just took control of a large swathe of the Iraq we thought we had birthed as a ‘democratic’ self-governing state), as a cover for total global domination that increasingly uses the tools perfected by Nazi Germany.

However, it doesn’t take a degree in international relations to see that the peoples of the world are increasingly sharing the same memes, which tend toward some form of socialism and oppose frenetic consumption. (When the Chinese wake up to its downside, the movement will become unstoppable.) Last summer, while ISIS was announcing that it would set up a Caliphate, Turkish youth demonstrated for weeks to prevent Gezi Park from being turned into a shopping mall, while Brazilians did likewise against the money being spent to host the World Cup. As the games draw to a close, Dennis Trainor, Jr. shared the results of a Pew Poll: 61% of Brazilians think the World Cup is bad for Brazil, more than a million people having taken to the streets of major cities in the past year to protest corruption, rising inflation and a lack of government investment in public services such as education, health care and public transportation.) On May 29th the Guardian took a look at Turkey a year after the Gezi protests and found, among other things that: “Social movements and ideas of how to challenge power certainly emerged from the June protests in Gezi Park – neighborhood forums, politically motivated squatting, and volunteer election observers are just a few of the social experiments now under way in Turkey.

As for the Middle East, which Washington planned to remake to its advantage, it may be slipping from its grasp – but then again, perhaps not: With only ten thousand men, ISIS has taken control of a good chunk of both Syria and Iraq. While the West feigns surprise, it’s hard to believe that the world’s biggest intelligence apparatus, not to mention drones and just plain folks on the ground, including Embassies and their staffs, didn’t know what was going on. More likely, the Caliphate is part of the well-oiled (sic) march toward “total dominance” (see Fascism; Which Flavor Do You Prefer?

As the Arab spring morphs into a long, hot summer, Europe too is rethinking its situation: after seventy years of subservience, America’s allies are beginning to realize that they must break with the U.S. Although their peoples strenuously opposed the Vietnam War, after the demise of the Soviet Union they allowed NATO to go back on its promises and move right up to the Russian border, while their economies became ever more subservient to Wall Street. The ‘mini’ depression of 2008 dealt a devastating blow to the European welfare state, forcing governments to implement austerity measures instead of continuing to meet the needs of their people. But the takeover of Ukraine engineered by the Neo-Conservative guardians of American business, and implemented by third generation storm troopers, is where the rubber is meeting the road. The French statement is not a sign of pique, but the inevitable result of America’s total lack of historical perspective. Forgetting that Europeans experienced real fascism, Washington assumed they would not realize what was happening to them.

Europeans are not only determined to resist fascism, they notice the dichotomy between Obama’s persistent belligerence in both word and deed, and the Russian President’s consistent calls for negotiations and dialogue in each and every conflictual situation. If their hitherto pusillanimous governments finally assert their independence, the hundredth anniversary of the First World War may not coincide with the outbreak of a Third World War, as many have feared. Instead, Turkish, Brazilian, Egyptian and Ukrainian youth may become the forerunners of a global polity that rejects all forms of totalitarianism and turns its energies from mindless consumption to saving the planet.

Saturday Art: Mayan Excavation

By: Ruth Calvo Sunday February 26, 2012 3:00 pm

Editor’s Note: Ruth Calvo is in Belize on an archaeology dig. Her initial post is here.

Mayan temples are the excavation we’re doing here in Blue Creek, Belize. The site is IZ’noha, and we’re finding structures from the post classical period which is not the finest architecture, but has the usual symmetry and form of the earlier periods and I’m going to put up a few pictures of the excavation we’re involved in, which emerges a little more each day.

These pictures are in order as the dig brings out new features as we progress.

My first day at the dig, the bottom edge as we look for stairs and courtyard structure.

A few feet further and deeper

Stairs start to come into view

We progress up toward the upper chambers, more stairs.

Completed temple, Mask Temple at Lamanai in Belize.

Ice Cream Social: The Struggle for the Soul of Ben & Jerry’s – Book Salon Preview

By: Elliott Tuesday May 8, 2012 5:26 pm

Ice Cream Social: The Struggle for the Soul of Ben & Jerry’s

Chat with Brad Edmondson about his new book, hosted by Rodney North of Equal Exchange.

Today at 5pm ET, 2pm PT

For more than three decades, Ben & Jerry’s has been committed to an insanely ambitious three-part mission: not just making the world’s best ice cream but also supporting progressive causes and sharing its success with all stakeholders—employees, suppliers, distributors, customers, cows, everybody. Living up to these beliefs is fun when you’re doing it right, and it creates amazingly loyal customers, but it isn’t easy.

This is the first book to tell the full, inside story of the inspiring rise, tragic mistakes, devastating fall, determined recovery, and ongoing renewal of one of the most iconic mission-driven companies in the world. No previous book has focused so intently on the challenges presented by staying true to the mission as the business grew. No other book has explained how the company came to be sold to Unilever, one of the world’s biggest corporations. And none has described the unprecedented contract Ben & Jerry’s negotiated with Unilever to preserve the three-part mission or the complex working relationship that has allowed the company to pursue that mission on a much larger stage.

Brad Edmondson tells the story with a journalist’s eye for details, dramatic moments, and memorable characters. Among the dozens of key figures Edmondson interviewed, his most important source was Jeff Furman, who helped Ben and Jerry write their first business plan in 1978 and has stayed involved ever since, serving as chairman of the board since 2010. It’s a funny, sad, surprising, and ultimately hopeful story.

Brad Edmondson is a writer and consultant who helps people and organizations understand and benefit from social change. He is fascinated by how change happens, and why. A few years ago, while writing about New York’s six-million-acre Adirondack Park, Brad learned that the wilderness preserve at the core of it was once privately owned. The land reverted to state ownership after loggers cut down all the trees and walked away. Now the park is the crown jewel of the Empire State, thanks to one far-sighted law, a vigilant public, and one hundred growing seasons.

Brad was raised in rural south Florida, on a farm that was established in 1923 and is still operated by his family. He attended Deep Springs, a college with an unusual curriculum that trains students for lives of service. By the time Brad got a history degree from Cornell in 1981, he knew he wanted to be a writer and storyteller. Instead of going to graduate school, he took editorial jobs at the Ithaca Times (1981–85), a weekly newspaper that covered peace and social justice issues, and American Demographics magazine (1985–98), a monthly Dow Jones magazine that explained the impact of population change and consumer trends on businesses, organizations, and society. During Brad’s tenure as editor in chief of American Demographics, the magazine was nominated three times for the National Magazine Award for General Excellence. (Berrett-Koehler books)

You can read excerpts here.
Here the author interviews Jeff Furman, chair of the board of Ben & Jerry’s: