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Not So Crazy

March 19, 1992|CHARLES PERRY

El Pollo Loco, the eatery empire built on spicy grilled chicken, has at last seen the light and introduced a taco and a burrito based on steak fajitas. (They emphasize that this is lean beef, with a lower percentage of calories from fat than in certain competitors' fajitas.)

Rethermalizing Large

Starting in April, Tyson Healthy Portion Meals will introduce a line of frozen healthy meals with portions up to 50% larger than most other brands. They'll be priced around $3.29 in major grocery chains and will average 13.5 ounces but not exceed 400 calories or 19% calories from fat.

Haagen-Dazsing Huge

Having moved up to the pint size last year, Haagen-Dazs is rolling out its frozen yogurt by the quart in 18 cities this week. You'll be able to get your vanilla, chocolate, vanilla almond crunch and peach in the $4.49 size any day now.

You're Cleared for Latte

If you can't face the prospect of regular airline coffee anymore, MGM Grand Air now has the world's first airborne espresso. The Piacere Espresso Co. had to develop a special space-saving cabinet with FAA-approved bolting to dispense the pre-brewed espresso and cappuccino.


Robert Vilardi of Luminaria Restaurant in Los Angeles won the March 6 Girl Scout Cookie Sweet-Off, a unique cooking contest based on Girl Scout Cookies. Here's his recipe, in case you want to whip up about 24 pounds' worth:


2 1/2 pounds Girl Scout Samoan Cookies

1 1/2 pounds macadamia nuts, chopped

1 quart corn syrup

3 pounds unsalted butter, room temperature

1 pound flour

5 pounds sugar

White Chocolate Mousse

Cream cookies, nuts, corn syrup, butter, flour and sugar. Form into small balls, place on parchment paper and flatten. Bake at 400 degrees 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven, let stand 30 seconds and fold over to resemble tacos. Pipe White Chocolate Mousse into shells and garnish with coconut. Makes lots and lots and lots.

White Chocolate Mousse

20 ounces white chocolate

6 tablespoons sugar


3/4 cup butter, room temperature

10 egg yolks

1 gallon cream

Melt white chocolate in double boiler with sugar and pinch salt. Add butter, mixing well. Remove from heat and stir in egg yolks one at time. Chill 30 minutes. Whip cream until it holds stiff peak. Fold cream into chilled chocolate.

Veggie Rap

A rap song aimed at promoting the idea of getting 5- to 10-year-olds to eat five portions of fruits and vegetables a day will be broadcast on Fox, ABC and CBS later this month. We'd always wondered who listens to rap music.

What I Learned in College

The thesis of "Tray Gourmet: Be Your Own Chef in the College Cafeteria" (Lake Isle Press: $10.95) is that with salad bars and microwave ovens standard issue in college cafeterias these days, students can customize their food. The recently graduated authors' recipes include cheese fondues, steak teriyaki and rice pudding as well as Pie Beta Kappa and I Think Therefore I Ham Salad.

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