November 18, 2009 |
Mother Nature may have sneaked off with a sought-after slice of Thanksgiving. Recent heavy rains in the Midwest are putting pumpkin pie in short supply this holiday season. On Tuesday, food giant Nestle, which controls about 85% of the pumpkin crop for canning, issued a rare apology and said that rain appeared to have destroyed what remained of a small harvest this year and that it expected to stop shipping the holiday staple by Thanksgiving. Supermarkets say supplies are tight, depending on the store.
November 15, 2009 |
Pumpkins and cranberries in the supermarket signal the beginning of the holiday season. As it happens, these two festive foods also provide a feast for your skin. Savvy spas and beauty product manufacturers are capitalizing on the autumnal bounty to help customers develop a fetching glow. For instance, the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills offers a fruit and pumpkin enzyme peel, and Verabella Skin Therapy (also in Beverly Hills) is showcasing what it calls the "Fall on Your Face" facial with pumpkin.
October 28, 2009 |
If you owned a successful movie called "Monsters vs. Aliens" and all the characters contained therein, you would be some kind of fool to let Halloween go by unexploited. Your stockholders would be right to rise up and smother you in goo, in a playful yet serious way. That is not how they roll here in Hollywood, where every hit becomes a brand. And so we have "Monsters vs. Aliens: Mutant Pumpkins From Outer Space," a DreamWorks production that premieres tonight on NBC. It is naturally something less -- less spectacular, less subtle -- than the movie that preceded it, which, after all, cost more than $165 million and a reported 45.6-million computing hours to produce, almost twice as many hours as I spend each week on Facebook.
October 22, 2009 |
Although farmers markets are no longer chock full of summer peaches, cherries and tomatoes, produce is still available at the region's U-pick farms. What better way to celebrate this season's harvest than gathering a group of friends and family and heading out to the source and snagging your favorite fall produce? Here's a short list of some of SoCal's fall-friendly farms where you can gather your own goods. To read the full list, go to theguide.latimes.com. Underwood Family Farms Underwood still has strawberries, raspberries and a few heirloom and celebrity tomatoes available for picking.
October 10, 2009 |
Pumpkin pie lovers be warned: You may not find your favorite can of pie filling at the supermarket. There's a national shortage of canned pumpkin and pie filling, a result of poor weather that reduced last year's crop. Shoppers report finding bare shelves, and the supermarkets say they have been put on an "allocation," or quota, system by Libby's, a division of food giant Nestle that controls more than 80% of the canned pumpkin market. Libby's typically uses surpluses from the previous year to stock store shelves during September and October, when the annual pumpkin harvest gets underway.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 9, 2009 |
They're being forced to live on crumbs, so nuns at a Hollywood convent famous for its pumpkin bread are warning that they may have to slice up the place for development. The threat of a shutdown of the 75-year-old Monastery of the Angels below the Hollywood sign has prompted neighbors and supporters to mount a campaign to save the four-acre religious retreat.
December 4, 2008 |
Anniversary concert tours are traditionally about celebrating history and waxing nostalgic with loyal fans. But the Smashing Pumpkins don't put much stock in tradition, even less in nostalgia. So on the group's 20th anniversary tour, which reached Los Angeles this week for shows Tuesday and Wednesday at the Gibson Amphitheatre, founding members Billy Corgan and Jimmy Chamberlin are emphasizing provocation over celebration, with set lists devoted as much or more to new and outside material and extended jams than the group's hits.
December 4, 2008 |
Billy Corgan of Smashing Pumpkins was being funny. "It's a good time for you to sit, because you're all old, I can see," he teased fans as he picked up an acoustic guitar on Tuesday, in the first of the band's two nights at the Gibson Amphitheatre. "The '90s are a distant memory." Maybe not so distant for Corgan, who has been leading the newest version of the Pumpkins in an ambitious 20th anniversary tour, challenging audiences to see the band beyond its 1990s hits. That's been a problem for Corgan since re-forming the group in 2006 (minus original members James Iha and D'arcy Wretzky)
November 27, 2008 |
At least two frequent fliers will be getting a good deal on holiday travel and accommodations this Thanksgiving. Pumpkin and Pecan, the lucky turkeys whose lives were spared by the annual Thanksgiving presidential pardon Wednesday, will fly first-class on United Airlines to Los Angeles, where one of them will be grand marshal in Disneyland's Thanksgiving parade today. The pair will then take up residence in a turkey house in the amusement park's Frontierland.
November 26, 2008 |
Of the many rituals that signify the holiday dinner, there are two that serve as the bookends that make Thanksgiving more than just another lowercase meal: the carving of the turkey to start the festivities and the serving of the pumpkin pie at the very, very end. Now for turkey lovers, that order is fine. But for us pumpkin lovers, it's a mighty long time to wait. Too long.