Commissary Kitchen, a prison cookbook by a Mobb Deep rapper

mobb deep, prison chef
Source: Teddy Wolff/Infamous Books

A new cookbook is on the market about which its prison chef author Prodigy Johnson of the rap group Mobb Deep writes, “This book won’t make you a better cook, but it might make you a better person.”

Knowing what to eat and how to make it is evidently such an important part of prison life that there’s an entire cottage industry of cookbooks written on the subject. Inmate survival guides often have a section on food and how to use the commissary to augment prison diets. Commissary Kitchen: My Infamous Prison Cookbook, which will be published this month, is written by Prodigy and journalist Kathy Iandoli. read more

For healthy and non-GMO foods, vote for House and Senate candidates like Josh Gottheimer

Josh Gottheimer v Garrett in NJ's 5th CD
Source: foodpolicyaction.com

In November, vote for the House and Senate candidates who believe in good, healthy and GMO-free food. Food Policy Action compares the food positions of 12 sets of candidates.

Here’s the scoop on Rep. Scott Garrett vs. Josh Gottheimer – New Jersey’s 5th District Congressional candidates:

Josh Gottheimer supports a strong federal safety net for seniors and food insecure families with children. He also supports fair wages and working conditions for food and farm workers. Incumbent Scott Garrett has voted repeatedly to cut hunger reduction and nutrition programs like SNAP; and he opposed measures that would reduce the misuse of antibiotics in food. read more

What if industrialized food has made us fat and we’ll be slender if we eat wholesome foods?

Cake v. salad
Source: HealthCastle.com
Paul Tappenden believe that food choices – not gluttony or a predisposition to being fat – are why so many Americans are overweight these days. And he offers some pretty good ideas on simple changes we can build into our eating habits that will significantly change our fat quotient.

OBESITY

Why are there so many over weight people in America? I have many well intentioned friends who are 30 to 40 pounds over-weight. For the most part they don’t want to be that way, and in many cases they put themselves on diets to no avail. They are not vast over eaters, yet the pounds keep creeping on read more

English Muffin with butter & jam

fork split english muffinI want to make sure all my friends know that English Muffins must get split with a fork (or another tined object) but never a knife. The point is to preserve the nooks and crannies which after all, is an important aspect of every good American’s civic duty.
English Muffin with butter & jam
Then you toast the muffin. English Muffins must always be well toasted. Apply jam, butter or cream cheese and munch happily away. My sainted mother passed these traditions along to me when I was a girl, and now you know too. Enjoy! read more

Resources for Newark residents

Newark County Committeeperson Douglas Freeman called in to say, Newark’s South Ward Residents need food, baby food, diapers; warming and charging stations. Residents basically just want something that says, “We care. we’re not just leaving you here and you’re fending for yourselves with no one caring what’s happening to you. I was in the dark along with everyone and we had electrical wires hooked up between houses and all of that – if we could do that, I know the city can do something … Just show people that you care, that’s all.” read more

Sandy recovery – get & give help

General government-based assistance

  • Legal hotline for NJ residents needing legal assistance after #Sandy.
    1-888-541-1900 or probono_public_service/ls_pb_hurricane_sandy_fema_new_jersey.authcheckdam.pdf
  • A special Federal Government website is set up to process Sandy requests http://www.disasterassistance.gov. It consolidates the application process across several Federal agencies, including FEMA and the Small Business Administration and reduces the number of forms applicants will need to fill out and you can check the progress of your applications online. You can also apply at
    • 1-800-621-FEMA (1-800-621-3362) or fema.gov
    • via smartphone at m.fema.gov
    • Speech disability or hearing loss
      TTY 1-800-462-7585
      711 or Video Relay Service (VRS) 1-800-621-3362

    Financial assistance and grants

    Look into applying for a Lion Clubs International direct grant or see what your local club has to offer. FEMA assistance and how to apply

    5. Operation Hope
    Financial dignity nonprofit Operation HOPE offers financial triage, financial recovery and free consultation services for individuals and small business owners impacted by Hurricane Sandy. More information here

  • 6. Disaster SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) Information (aka Foodstamps)
    SNAP Handbook Guide
    b. D-SNAP Toolkit: SNAP Guidance Toolkit.pdf

Health issues

The New Jersey Department of Health has public health experts available through the state’s 2-1-1 system to answer questions about food and water safety and mold removal. To reach public health experts, call 211 or 1-866-234-0964, or visit them online at nj211.org. Experts are available 8am-8pm weekdays and 10am-5pm weekends. More than 800 New Jersey residents have called the Department of Health hotline seeking help with food and drinking water safety, mold removal and prevention of carbon monoxide poisoning. The 211 number is open for general enquiries 24/7. read more