The CONNsumer: Looking for a Refund on a Used Car?

04/20/16

The CONNsumer: Looking for a Refund on a Used Car?

“Getting a refund on a used car isn’t like buying a shirt from a store and bringing it back,” says Ryan Conway, who owns Shamrock Motors in East Windsor. “It’s just not like that.”

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Silky (and Safe) Skin by Hartford-Based Company Nzuri Gold

04/20/16

Silky (and Safe) Skin by Hartford-Based Company Nzuri Gold

Hartford-based skin care company, Nzuri Gold, offers all-natural solutions for all skin types

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New Documentary Shows How Dog & His Owner Changed Animal Cruelty Laws

04/19/16

New Documentary Shows How Dog & His Owner Changed Animal Cruelty Laws

Documentary filmmaker Gorman Bechard tells the story of one dog and his owner who changed the animal cruelty laws in Alabama in his latest film, "A Dog Named Gucci," to be released April 19.

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Chopped Champ Dishes on Recipes For Success

04/18/16

Chopped Champ Dishes on Recipes For Success

A former advertising professional, Silvia Baldini took on -- and conquered -- the culinary industry. Now she’s helping Connecticut women achieve their own career transitions and ambitions.

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04/18/16

The Dessert That Won on Chopped

Silvia Baldini's Chopped-winning dessert, balsamic strawberry soup and sweet canederli (poached dumplings) Photo by Francesco Sapienza Connecticut’s Silvia Baldini was competing in the final round of an episode of Chopped last year, against chef Cole, from Charleston, South Carolina, with dessert to determine the champion. Cole’s dish, sweet nachos, was well received, but Silvia was unfazed. “I knew mine would win,” she says. “I looked over at his, and just knew mine was better.” She was right. Her balsamic strawberry soup with poached dumplings stunned the judges. “That’s one of the most delicious desserts I’ve ever had in this kitchen, period,” said one. “It was...

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04/18/16

Chef Silva's 10 Tips For Great Meals

1. Choose local, in-season ingredients. Locally grown foods always taste best and are fresher, longer lasting and more nutritious. I like to cook using seasonal ingredients not only because they are healthier for you and better for the environment, but because I get stronger, bolder flavors in my dishes. For example, I use peaches and melons in summer, then chestnuts, cabbage, potatoes and citrus in fall and winter, and asparagus, cherries and strawberries in spring. At the end of winter I get excited for snap peas and peppery radishes! 2. Try to prep ahead. I learned to plan and prep ahead at Le Cordon Bleu and working in professional kitchens. Prepping is probably the most valuable skill when it comes to cooking. I wash and chop all my vegetables, herbs and most...

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04/18/16

Perfect Poached Eggs

Poached egg, served in a homemade tart shell, with spinach and chopped, pan-fried mushrooms. Photos by Francesco Sapienza BY MICHAEL CATAREVAS When I arrived at Silvia Baldini’s house for our first interview, there was the promise of brunch. Little did I know I would be “encouraged” to help create it. It didn’t help when she said there would be poached eggs and I blurted out that I didn’t much care for them. If looks could flambé ... Fortunately she came around when reminded that her story was not yet written. After talking for a while, it was kitchen time. Suddenly someone who had never cracked open an egg without breaking the yolk would have one chance to cook a perfectly poached egg under the stern...

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04/18/16

Stocking the Perfect Pantry

A peek inside the pantry of Silvia Baldini's New Canaan kitchen reveals muscovado sugar, wildflower honey, Marmite yeast extract, steel-cut Irish oatmeal and baking powder. Photo by Francesco Sapienza “Always having the right ingredients on hand at home is like having money in the bank,” says Silvia Baldini. “You can make a meal anytime in less than 20 minutes by shopping in your cupboards. This is a basic list of what I have in my pantry.” Salt Black peppercorns Extra virgin olive oil Vegetable oil Apple cider vinegar Red wine vinegar Balsamic or sherry vinegar Rice vinegar (unseasoned) Flour: all-purpose, whole wheat or pastry Baking soda Baking powder Cream of tartar Cocoa...

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04/18/16

Betta's Baked Apples Recipe

Looking for a quick, easy and sweet snack or dessert? Betta's baked apples fit the bill. Photo by Francesco Sapienza Ingredients 6 cooking apples cored ½ cup of jam. I like blueberries or a mix of berry jam 2 tbsp butter 2 tbsp sugar Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees Line a baking dish with parchment paper Arrange the cored apples on the paper Spoon some of the jam inside the apples, filling the holes created by coring them. Add a small amount of butter on the top and sprinkle all of them with sugar. Bake for 40-45 minutes. They should be soft but still in shape when cooked. Serve warm or room temperature. They are great on their own or with a scoop of ice cream.

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BEACHCOMBING: Teaching Kids to Love Reading

04/15/16

BEACHCOMBING: Teaching Kids to Love Reading

An author for the New Yorker describes how local hero teachers are getting teens hooked on books

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