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THE FEATURE – The coffee enlightenment

Learn how the drink changed the world and how Des Moines’ coffee culture thrived by being ignored By Jim Duncan Coffee twice changed the world dramatically. The seeds of the berries of the coffee plant rested inconspicuously for hundreds, maybe thousands, of years in their native habitats in the Horn of Africa and Arabia. There […]

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Iowans have deep roots with steakhouses and steak de Burgo.

THE FEATURE – Extravagant tastes of Des Moines

Caviar, escargot, foie gras, black truffles and more of the most exclusive menu items the metro has to offer By Jim Duncan Historians have written that most wars were waged because the people of one tribe or nation wanted the foods of another tribe or nation. Certainly there has been a distinct relationship between imperialism […]

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chicken feature

THE FEATURE – How chicken changed America and vice versa

By Jim Duncan Chicken transformed America after World War II, and vice versa. Post-war industrial agriculture streamlined the business and the breeding of poultry. That industry quickly shortened the time it took to raise a market-sized bird, reducing feeding expenses. Believing white meat was more valuable, breeders created flightless creatures with huge breasts and skinny […]

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THE FEATURE – What is Iowa cuisine?

It is much more than you might think. By Jim Duncan God, and the most recent Ice Age, blessed Iowa with the best soil on earth for growing good things to eat. After World War II, though, once diverse and sustainable farms were plowed in the service of corn and soybeans. As a result, the […]

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Relish Winter 2015 17

THE FEATURE – Super Bowls: Des Moines’ Favorite Soups

By Jim Duncan Soup was likely discovered about 20,000 years ago, soon after the invention of waterproof clay pots. Because liquids were being boiled, bacteria were killed, and soups were considered medicinal. In 16th century Paris, street vendors sold “restaurants” — cheap soups advertised for restoring one’s health. When one such vendor moved into a […]

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