To Your Health: Enjoy whole grains for burst of flavor (and nutrition)


Typically, this column focuses on fruits and vegetables that are in-season for Illinois. Since it is January and there are fewer items growing outside, it's time to discuss another favorite: whole grains.

There are two types of grains in our diet: whole grains and refined grains.

Today's Special: UI grad opens Chinese restaurant in Campustown

CHAMPAIGN — After operating restaurants in New York and Chicago, 2013 University of Illinois grad Yongzheng Dai has come home to launch another in the heart of Campustown.

Following a soft opening in December, Mid-Summer Lounge officially opened Jan. 16 in the former Casablanca Kabab House space at 623 E. Green St.

Dai promises authentic Chinese food.

Meg Makes: Swedish cookies are small but mighty

I'm always amazed how easily a great recipe can move through social networks.

Take this one for a Swedish cookie that's small but tasty.

Heather Tucker, the source of the amazing local honey I've been eating since fall, shared a batch of these with me.

My Amish Home: Surprises lay waste to best-laid plans

"Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day, God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made." Genesis 2:1-3

My Amish Home: Looking to recharge in dreary days

"And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the Earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, created He him, male and female created He them.

Meg Makes: Tricky, twisty tart is worth the effort

My baking friends and I caught up this weekend after a too-long hiatus from trying new recipes. I wanted to use up the last of some local honey I was given last fall.

We tried a couple of different recipes, but the clear winner was this tart. The recipe originally comes from the National Honey Board. We doubled it with no issues.

Meg Makes: Broccoli gives slaw a unique crunch

Our family Christmas meal this year featured ham, macaroni and cheese, and baked beans. It was not your average turkey-and-dressing affair.

My contribution: broccoli slaw. I wanted to bring something somewhat healthy and a little unusual.

My Amish Home: Good times, except for forgetting horse

"And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

Today's Special: Catering to man, man's best friend

URBANA — You and your pooch can both get a treat from a new business in Urbana.

Four weeks ago, three bakers launched Lucky Pierre Bakers, a place that makes and sells both doughnuts and dog biscuits.

That's entertainment: Spotlighting events throughout the area


Activities in Urbana and Bloomington

Two central Illinois cities will host series of downtown events on Friday.