CBS News Logo “Impossible” to find all dead in crushed Nepal village

KATHMANDU, Nepal -- Rescuers were digging Tuesday through thousands of tons of earth from a quake-triggered mudslide in Nepal that wiped out an entire village along a popular Himalayan trekking route and killed at least 60 people. Nine of the victims recovered in the Langtang Valley since the April 25 earthquake and mudslide were foreign trekkers, said Gautam Rimal, the top government official in the Rasuwa district. Villagers say as many as 200 people could have been killed. The valley and its little village of Langtang are about 35 miles north of Nepal's capital, Kathmandu. It was a popular stop for trekkers because of its scenic views of the Himalayas. "The entire village was wiped out by the mudslide. There were some 60 houses there, but they were all buried under rubble. It will be impossible to recover all the bodies," Rimal said. The village is now about a two-day hike from the nearest town because the landslide has blocked area roads. While helicopters allow easy access, they remain in short supply because of aid missions across the quake-affected parts of Nepal. The still-rising death toll from the quake, Nepal's worst in more than 80 years, has reached more than 7,500. In Kathmandu, authorities say up to one-third of the city's residents have left since the quake. In the first days, bus stations were jammed with people fearing aftershocks or trying to get home to relatives in devastated villages. Authorities do not know how many of those people have returned to the capital, but on Tuesday there were still people waiting for buses to leave. "I stayed back here to help out my neighbors and clean up the neighborhood," said Surya Singh, who was at a large bus station. But now he wants to see the damage in his home village - though with many roads still blocked by landslides he was unsure if he could get all the way by bus. Kathmandu police say nearly 900,000 people have left in the past 10 days. The population of Kathmandu valley - including the city of Continue Reading

Village Grille owner shares his secret to popular chicken souvlaki

Looking for authentic Greek food like perfectly seasoned chicken that melts in your mouth? Marwan Yacoub is the guy to see. He has owned The Village Grille in Williamsville for 23 years and lives by the motto, “We are fresh food, not fast food.” But plenty of busy people turn to Yacoub for weekday lunches and dinners by calling ahead for takeout orders. While chicken souvlaki is the most popular item, Yacoub encourages customers to explore the entire longstanding menu. Yacoub took a break from the busy kitchen to talk about his secret to chicken souvlaki that keeps loyal customers coming back. Question: Your chicken souvlaki is very popular. What’s your secret? Yacoub: Chicken is marinated with spices to give it tenderness. You have to marinate it for a few days to soak in and get the flavor. The dressing for sure, the rice pudding, the marinade for the meat - all that stuff we do ourselves from scratch. Q: What would you say is second in popularity? A: Souvlaki is our No. 1 seller, but everything else on the menu sells, too, so that’s why I have a hard time eliminating certain items. But souvlaki is definitely No. 1 and stir fry is No. 2. We sell a lot of stir fry. It’s our own combination of seasoned rice with onion, mushrooms, broccoli and tomatoes and our own blend of stir fry sauce. I like the stir fry and the salads. Take-out orders are popular for lunch and dinner. (Elizabeth Carey/Special to The News.) Q: How did you come up with the recipes? A: Everything has been on the menu ever since we started. I just came up with the recipes and practiced and what I didn’t like I would change around to my liking because honestly if there is something I can’t eat myself, I don’t want to serve it. That’s why I don’t buy cheap product. I have a lot of friends and family come in so I won’t serve it if I know it’s not good. Q: How many customers are regulars? A: We have a very loyal customer base. They Continue Reading

North Texas nonprofit wants to end urban food deserts by using your backyard

Local crusaders against poverty want to use your backyard to fight hunger. North Texas allies for the homeless want to help struggling families living in food deserts — urban areas where it can be hard to find affordable, healthy fresh food because of a lack of nearby grocery stores. The solution may involve getting more people to grow leafy greens and vegetables in urban and suburban gardens across Tarrant County. A new nonprofit called The Garden Network of Tarrant County aims to feed more hungry families by teaching them to grow healthy food in backyards or other available urban green spaces “The ultimate goal is to put backyard gardens into the backyards of food insecure people,” said Neale Mansfield, executive director of the network. “These are folks who don’t have the means to drive far away to buy fresh produce." The network includes food advocates from the Tarrant Area Food Bank, the Food Policy Council, food pantries and gardening experts. The network is looking for food allies willing to help by planting vegetables to donate to pantries. These budding philanthropists can help by bringing backyard gardens to low-income families. For $190, a person can purchase a backyard raised garden with the commitment to give a portion of the harvests to a local food pantry. Another way to support the program is to buy a raised garden bed for a low-income family for $190. A third option allows supporters to buy two gardens for $350 - one for themselves and one for a low-income family. The garden boxes are installed on site of the homeowner, Mansfield said. The planting space will be 8 inches tall, 4 feet wide and 12 feet long, or 48 square feet, he said. They are built with cinder blocks. On Saturday, the network will officially launch the nonprofit by showcasing six urban gardening programs that will be part of the program. Beds for gardens will be built at several sites, including the Salvation Army, Presbyterian Night Shelter and The Continue Reading

Food and drink events: Cooking classes, wine tastings, more

FOOD & DRINK EVENTSThe American Club Resort: In Celebration of Chocolate, Feb. 16-18. Three-day culinary event features food pairings, demonstrations, evening dinners and events. Information and reservations: (855) 444-2838; americanclubresort.comBartolotta Restaurants: Pricing is per person, plus tax and gratuity, unless stated otherwise. bartolottas.comBacchus, 925 E. Wells St. Reservations: (414) 765-1166. Italian Wine Dinner: Tenuta Sette Ponti and Feudo Maccari. Feb. 20. $95.Lake Park Bistro, 3133 E. Newberry Blvd. Reservations: (414) 962-6300. Château Angélus Bordeaux Wine Dinner. March 1. $195.Ristorante Bartolotta, 7616 W. State St., Wauwatosa. Reservations: (414) 771-7910. Umbrian Wine Dinner: Arnaldo Caprai. Feb. 26. $89.Boerner Botanical Gardens: BREWtanical Series features Sweet Mullets Brewing, 6:30-8 p.m. Feb. 22. $15 general public; $10 FBBG members. Discover their history, process, and taste their beers. Registration recommended. You must be 21 to participate. Whitnall Park, 9400 Boerner Drive, Hales Corners. Information: (414) 525-5653; boernerbotanicalgardens.orgCedarburg Winter Festival: Indoor shopping, food and wine sampling, with outdoor activities, 8 a.m.-10 p.m. Feb. 17; 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Feb. 18. The Shops of Cedar Creek Settlement will offer complimentary wine, oil and balsamic, fudge and dip, moonshine and blue Hawaiian samples. Washington Ave., Cedarburg, (866) 626-7005; www.cedarburgfestivals.orgHales Corners Library: “The Tastes of Hales Corners” Wine & Beer Tasting, 6:30-9 p.m. March 1. $30 advance ticket; $35 at the door; $10 designated driver (food and soft drinks). 5885 S. 116th St., Hales Corners, (414) [email protected]: Valentine’s Day Dinner, Feb. 14. $54 per person; $68 with champagne and raspberries. 139 E. Kilbourn Ave. Reservations: (414) 291-4793.KANDU Industries: “Grapes & Hops” wine and beer tasting event featuring celebrity pourers, 6-10 p.m. Feb. 16. $60 in advance Continue Reading

The new fast food: Quick, healthy options

Not too long ago, fast food only meant fried goodies and chicken patties made from questionable animal parts. If you wanted something healthier, there weren’t many fast options to accommodate…or you made do with the meager “healthy” options on menus like dried-out salads or a plain grilled chicken breast — minus the bun. But a recent surge of fast take-out restaurants in WNY has changed all that, with menus featuring real ingredients, fresh fruits and veggies, and lean sources of protein. “Things have been trending in this direction for a few years now,” said Dr. Charles Lindsey, University of Buffalo associate professor of marketing, who focuses on consumer behavior and understanding consumption patterns and trends in the marketplace. “Millennials show a strong preference for healthy eating, especially once they began working and having families. They are looking for convenient and healthy options in the form of natural and organic in-store options, pre-prepped boxed meals that can be cooked at home, and healthy casual dining establishments.” The one thing these new places are missing is the traditional rock-bottom fast-food pricing. But people are willing to spend more money on these items…to an extent. There is good news on the horizon, though, said Lindsey. “Prices for natural and organic foods have been coming down due to competitive pressures. Whole foods just lowered their price point on many items after being purchased by Amazon and is actually starting a second chain called 365 (named after its private label brand) designed to appeal to more price conscious millennials.” The big question is, will these healthy eating establishments die out due to price or are they here to stay? “This is a solid trend, not a fad,” said Lindsey. “I believe it’s here to stay.” So what are some current local options in your neighborhood? The decor at Homegrown Kitchen in East Continue Reading

How to spend 10 hours in Pier Village

Upcoming events: Join Us for Asbury Park Press Night: Thursday, Dec. 1 is Asbury Park Press Night at Ice at the Pier.  Come to Pier Village and check out the new winter wonderland at Festival Plaza. Save $2 on admission and $2 off skate rentals. Adults, $10 and children, $6. Skate rentals, $2. Got to use promo code APPNight and save. Capture the Memories with Holiday Family Portraits Package: The Asbury Park Press invites you to capture the memories with a family holiday portrait at Ice at the Pier at Pier Village, Long Branch.  On Sunday, December 3, enjoy an afternoon of family skating and have a family portrait taken by a professional Asbury Park Press Photographer under the holiday tree. This special $50 package includes skating for 2 adults and 2 children, rentals for all and a family portrait. Visit use promo code APPPortrait for tickets.Asbury Park Press subscribers enter promo code APPInsiders and receive an additional $5 off. 10 hours in Pier Village: Who says Pier Village is just a summer destination?The oceanfront community is known for more than just its beaches and boardwalk.This winter, Pier Village will transform into a winter wonderland with the installation of its outdoor ice skating rink at Festival Plaza.Don't miss out. Grand opening weekend is coming up — Nov. 25 to 27 with the Long Branch tree lighting that Sunday.In honor of the Jersey Shore's very own outdoor rink, we created a guide to help you spend an entire day in Pier Village, enjoying the eclectic shops, the delicious restaurants and the luxurious spas.Here is how to spend 10 hours in Pier Village: 10 a.m. Start your day off with breakfast at Turning Point in Pier Village. The menu boasts heavenly hot chocolates, hot gourmet French press coffee, espresso and loose-leaf hot teas from green tea to herb and fruited to help warm you up before you hit the ice rink.After, indulge in a Continue Reading

Best of New York: East Village’s Creative Little Garden wins as Best Community Garden

CREATIVE LITTLE GARDEN Billed as “an oasis of tranquility in New York’s East Village,” the Creative Little Garden is an example of how New Yorkers can make the most out of any space, no matter how small it is. Opened in 1982 on the site of a former tenement building that burned down, this 24-by-100-foot garden, with 40 to 80 members at any one time, features a winding birch-chip path, eight sculptures, a waterfall, a wide variety of flora and fauna, and more birdhouses than local schoolchildren can count. The path winds past colorful azaleas, tulips, hydrangeas, ferns, rose bushes and bleeding hearts, before culminating in a slate patio nestled under the shade of a large willow tree. But the best part of the Creative Little Garden is that it is open every day and everyone is welcome, including leashed pets.   FLOYD BENNETT FIELD COMMUNITY GARDEN At the far edge of Brooklyn, bordering Jamaica Bay, lies the largest community garden in New York City with nearly 500 plots. Built on what was the city’s first airfield, the lush Floyd Bennett Field Community Garden at the Gateway National Recreation Area is as big as it is beautiful. Carrots, tomatoes, asparagus, basil, green beans and Swiss chard can all be found growing during summer. But good gardening takes commitment. There is a two-year waiting list to join the garden. Then, once you’re a member, you must meet an eight-hour community service requirement. Make no mistake about it, this is a serious garden. There is even a Conflict Resolution Committee that resolves disputes among members.   HANDS AND HEART GARDEN Sometimes a garden is more than just a garden. It’s a community center and neighborhood revitalizer. The Hands and Heart Garden opened in 2007 on the site of a long-abandoned, weed-choked lot to promote local sustainable agriculture in East New York, a neighborhood with few fresh-food options. Since then, the half-acre garden has thrived, Continue Reading

Donut divas do man food for Louder Than Life

In a kitchen in Clifton, on a recent morning, two friends worked in tandem covering freshly fried doughnuts with an assortment of handmade glazes and toppings.After three years in the doughnut business, the friends know the perfect combinations (peanut butter glaze and chocolate chips; bourbon caramel glaze with candied pecans) but they don't shy away from developing new pairings on the spot.They are the owners of Hi-Five Doughnuts, the #LadiesoftheMorning on Instagram, and with their fearless creations — from custom orders to fried chicken doughnut decadence — they've proved they can make gourmet greatness with the best of them.That's why Louder Than Life founder Danny Wimmer has hand-selected the female food truckers, Leslie Wilson and Annie Harlow, to take part in the festival's "Gourmet Man Food" experience for the past two years.Louder Than Life, featuring headliners Rob Zombie and ZZ Top, is more than a music festival, said Clay Busch, head of marketing and brand partnerships for Danny Wimmer Presents. The two-day event — returning this weekend at Champion Park — also highlights Louisville's food and beverage scene, inviting dozens of restaurants and distilleries to show off their goods in the Bourbon World Tent and Gourmet Man Food Village."We originally went to Louisville to start a bourbon (line) because we're fans of that drink, naturally," said Busch, who helps the company plan rock festivals across the country. "... We discovered the beverage gene there, and we thought why are we going to start a bourbon? Why aren't we doing a one-of-a-kind music festival tying in the food element of what makes Louisville so special? It's a once and a lifetime opportunity for us, and there's only one city we could probably do this in."We all know Louisville's got the foodie bug, but where does this gourmet man food concept come in?"Is that like ribs?" Harlow responded when asked what it is."When I think of man food, I think of hearty, filling," Continue Reading

Fresh farm food made available to poor, too

FRUITS AND veggies fresh off the farm are not just for yuppies and foodies. That's the philosophy of a new Community Supported Agriculture startup that will offer its produce to residents using food stamps in Long Island City and Astoria. Holton Farms, based in Vermont, brings its goods to city residents who sign up for an annual membership and pick up produce at dropoff points in Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan. But requiring members to fork over at least $250 upfront makes the service inaccessible to low-income residents - a feature of the Community Supported Agriculture groups that critics often point to as being elitist. That's why Jurrien Swarts, a Long Island City resident who co-owns Holton Farms, is starting a farm truck that will accept food stamps and offer a 20% discount on fruits and vegetables to low-income buyers. "We want to be known by people in these neighborhoods as someone who cares about them," said Swarts, 34. The company got approval for a mobile Electronic Benefits Transfer terminal at the end of last month and is now offering its farm-fresh foods to needier residents at all of its stops. "I'm hesitant to take a family's money in advance when they are living paycheck to paycheck," he said. "We want to figure out how to make a real meaningful impact. We want to become a member of these communities." For some food activists in Queens, making Community Supported Agriculture programs affordable is fundamental to the mission. "It's a common misconception that CSAs are expensive," said Heather Crosetto, a coordinator with the Long Island City CSA, which has 40% low-income membership and 15% food stamp users. "CSAs shouldn't be seen as an exclusive club," added Carrette Perkins, director of programs for the New York City Coalition Against Hunger, which partners with the CSA in Long Island City so that it can accept food stamps. Perkins said the model works - farmers can sustain their businesses and low-income residents in Queens Continue Reading

The mein event at Noodle Village

On the last cold day of winter, I blew through Chinatown and into Noodle Village, where the waitress saw my red nose and watery eyes and declared I needed congee. Not tea? I said. "Congee," she replied, and brought me two long crullers ($1.25) and a steaming bowl of thick rice porridge ($4.75). Studded with bitter greens and chunks of squash, it welcomed a drizzle of soy sauce and was delicious. I scraped the bottom of the bowl and felt able to face the world again.Of course, I went back to this newest New York version of a Hong Kong noodle shop. In Hong Kong, these are casual places to have a cup of tea, a dish of noodles and a chat with friends. But in New York, they're all about fresh food and fast service. Nobody lingered in the plain white-walled room: They were slurping noodles, reaching with chopsticks and drinking tea from handle-less cups. To start, we shared a flaky, scalding-hot scallion pancake ($3.75), a dish of crisp Chinese broccoli with oyster sauce ($4.25) and a glutinous rice dumpling, which turned out to be a tamale-like roll of minced meat first encased in glutinous rice and then fried and sliced ($2.95). Braced by these nibbles, we ordered a bowl of shrimp wonton soup, rich golden broth swimming with wide noodles, more broccoli and chewy dumplings packed with minced shrimp and pork ($4.75). With the soup, we had lo mein with oxtail in curry sauce ($6.75). The plate of slender yellow noodles came with chunks of beef and potatoes in a creamy curry sauce whose heat level was just one degree below discomfort. But the most interesting taste was the yuanyang, a mug of mixed coffee, tea and milk that's special to Hong Kong ($1.50 hot, $2.50 cold). It smells like coffee, has the tannic mouthfeel of tea, and like Hong Kong itself, combines East and West.NOODLE VILLAGE13 Mott St. near Chatham Square, (212) 233-0788Must haves: Worth a trip: Borough Join the Conversation: Continue Reading