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Fine Brine From Appalachia: The Fancy Mountain Salt That Chefs Prize

Thanksgiving feasts are always in need of something special.Can a sprinkle of artisanal salt noticeably pump up the experience?Let's meet a new Appalachian salt-maker in West Virginia and find out.J.Q. Dickinson Salt-Works is nestled in the Kanawha River Valley, just southeast of the capital city of Charleston in the small town of Malden (not to be confused with Maldon, a sea salt brand from the U.K.). It's mostly pasture land, with cows nearby.Amid the livestock, there's a new, small — you...
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Every year, the flu almost goes extinct in temperate places like the United States. The key word is "almost." It stays afloat by constantly moving.

"It looks like it's hopping between different cities and different populations," says Sarah Cobey, a computational biologist at the University of Chicago.

The virus does an annual migration across the world, hitting the Southern Hemisphere during its winter, the Northern Hemisphere right about now, and hanging out in the tropics in between — especially in parts of Asia.

Many Americans Believe They Don't Need The Flu Vaccine

5 minutes ago

Flu season is in swing and likely won't let up until April.

It seemed like high time to check in on how Americans feel about flu vaccination, so we asked more than 3,000 adults in the latest NPR-Truven Health Analytics Health Poll, conducted during the first half of October.

All told, 62 percent of people said they had been vaccinated or intended to get vaccinated against flu.

Is there ever a time when cool trumps science?

It's a question that becomes relevant when you consider NASA's plans to put a helicopter drone on an upcoming rover mission to Mars.

Thirty years ago, one of the most valuable paintings of the 20th century vanished. It wasn't an accident and it wasn't some elaborate movie heist. It was a simple theft — and it's still a mystery.

It was the day after Thanksgiving, 1985. Staff at the University of Arizona Museum of Art in Tucson were getting to work, just like any other day.

"It was almost 9:00 o'clock so the museum was gearing up to open the doors," says museum curator Olivia Miller. "The security guards opened the doors for one of the staff members, and two people followed behind."

Urban foraging might call to mind images of hipsters picking food out of the trash.

But one group in Massachusetts eats only the finest, freshest produce. The League of Urban Canners harvests fruit from trees in Cambridge and Somerville and turns it into jam.

Sam Christy, a local high school teacher, started the league four years ago.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit


Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit

When his cellphone rang Friday night, on Nov. 13, Joel Touitou Laloux didn't answer. The sun had long since set, the Jewish Sabbath was under way, and he doesn't use electronics on Shabbat.

He recognized the number. One of his sons was calling from Paris. Laloux, who managed the Bataclan theater for decades until he and his family sold it in September, now lives in Ashdod, a coastal city in southern Israel.

Finally, after his son's number flashed three or four times, Laloux answered.

This time of year we tend to do a lot of writing about food. Usually we describe delicious dishes that remind us of home and our favorite family traditions, but there's something missing from that conversation: the tale of the kitchen disaster, the wreck, the unsalvageable mess for which the only remedy is take-out.

To fully appreciate the special anguish that is a home-cooked meal gone wrong, we've asked three people with particular knowledge in this area to tell us about their worst-ever kitchen debacles.

For high school students looking to choose a college, grade point averages and test scores may weigh heavy on their minds. But campus atmosphere may not be far behind given recent demonstrations on college campuses across the country.

Students at the University of Missouri's flagship campus in Columbia were the forefront of a wave of protests over racist incidents and the reaction of school officials. For some high school students, those protests make racial relations factor highly in their college search.


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