food-o-file

Fare for the Fourth

Natural Foods Barbecue

Fiesta

I-35 and East 38th Street

Saturday & Sunday, July 1 & 2, noon-4pm The friendly folks at your local Fiesta grocery are throwing a big barbecue demonstration featuring all-natural food products outside their main store entrance this weekend. They'll be grilling up Vegetarian Hamburgers and Hot Dogs and serving them on Spelt Buns with your choice of natural condiments. Then you can fill up you plate with Cascadian Farm's Organic French Fries and pickles and Barbara's natural blue corn chips, wash it down with Good Flow's local, fresh-squeezed juices, and top it all off with Rice Dream's frozen, non-dairy dessert. They'll even be grilling with a natural product called Eco-Char. If you want to put a natural-foods spin on your traditional Fourth of July cookout, this looks like the place to get some creative ideas.

Iguana Grill

2900 Ranch Road 620 North, 266-8439

Open daily 11am-10pm

Denizens of the lake area alert! The owners of Manuel's and the Waterloo Icehouse have teamed up to bring you the Iguana Grill on RR 620 in the old Sunset Grill location. They're calling the fare "Lake-Mex" cuisine and promoting the idea that it's possible to have truly edible food along with pricey drinks and a breathtaking view of the lake. The food has more of a Tex-Mex taste than Manuel's, with an emphasis on appetizers, salads, chalupas, tacos, burritos, enchiladas, and grilled vegetables. They even have a kids' menu for your little iguanas. Try some of the good grilled items or a selection from the dessert menu; Tropical Mango Ice, Buñuelos with vanilla ice cream and spiced apples, or the Marta's Flan ($2.95 ea.). Chips and hot sauce will run you $1.95, and you can munch your way through the Top Ten Drink List that presents some very inviting options. Designate a driver and head on out there.

The Raw and the Cooked

After surviving their own E. Coli bacteria nightmare, the owners of Jack in the Box want to warn you about safe outdoor cooking practices for the upcoming holiday weekend. Remember these handy tips:

* Wash hands with soap and water before handling raw foods.

* Thoroughly cook all hamburger meat to an internal temperature of at least 155deg. - ground meat runs a high risk of contamination and should never be served rare.

* Avoid "cross contamination" by not allowing foods that are to be eaten raw

to touch food that is to be eaten cooked.

* Wash all cutting boards and utensils after they have been in contact with food.

* Don't leave perishable food out for more than an hour in our hot Texas weather.

* Refrigerate or freeze leftovers promptly.

Consider yourself warned. Now no one will believe your food poisoning story if you're late to work Wednesday morning.

- Virginia B. Wood

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