Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.

NPR Politics presents the Lunchbox List: our favorite campaign news and stories curated from NPR and around the Web in digestible bites (100 words or less!). Look for it every weekday afternoon from now until the conventions.

Convention Countdown

The Republican National Convention is in 4 days in Cleveland.

The Democratic National Convention is in 11 days in Philadelphia.

NASA has released the first picture of Jupiter taken since the Juno spacecraft went into orbit around the planet on July 4.

The picture was taken on July 10. Juno was 2.7 million miles from Jupiter at the time. The color image shows some of the atmospheric features of the planet, including the giant red spot. You can also see three of Jupiter's moons in the picture: Io, Europa and Ganymede.

The Senate is set to approve a bill intended to change the way police and health care workers treat people struggling with opioid addictions.

My husband and I once took great pleasure in preparing meals from scratch. We made pizza dough and sauce. We baked bread. We churned ice cream.

Then we became parents.

Now there are some weeks when pre-chopped veggies and a rotisserie chicken are the only things between us and five nights of Chipotle.

Parents are busy. For some of us, figuring out how to get dinner on the table is a daily struggle. So I reached out to food experts, parents and nutritionists for help. Here is some of their (and my) best advice for making weeknight meals happen.

"O Canada," the national anthem of our neighbors up north, comes in two official versions — English and French. They share a melody, but differ in meaning.

Let the record show: neither version of those lyrics contains the phrase "all lives matter."

But at the 2016 All-Star Game, the song got an unexpected edit.

At Petco Park in San Diego, one member of the Canadian singing group The Tenors — by himself, according to the other members of the group — revised the anthem.

School's out, and a lot of parents are getting through the long summer days with extra helpings of digital devices.

How should we feel about that?

Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Making 'The Science Of Good Cooking' Look Easy

Oct 12, 2012
Originally published on October 12, 2012 5:36 am

Ever wondered why you're not supposed to bake with cold eggs or whether marinating really tenderizes meat? Read on.

America's Test Kitchen host Chris Kimball "whisks away" some cooking myths as he talks with Morning Edition host Renee Montagne about the book he wrote, The Science of Good Cooking, with fellow Cook's Illustrated magazine editors. Being the science and cooking geeks that we are, we tuned in.

If you've ever looked up a meat recipe online, chances are it calls for a marinade. But marinating doesn't really tenderize meat. "This is your awakening," Kimball tells Montagne.

"The problem is, marinades contain acids, usually vinegar, and those break down meat but only to about a quarter of an inch of thickness. And when they break it down, they turn it to mush. They don't really tenderize it," he says.

"What does work is salting," Kimball says. "Salt gets in, it allows the protein molecules to absorb water, it loosens up the protein fibers so it retains that water and it's easier to chew." So brining meats in a mixture of salt and water and sometimes sugar is what produces a juicier meat. (Remember that, as you get ready for Turkey Day next month.)

Another myth Kimball busts is about seeding tomatoes. A lot of soup recipes call for the tedious process of ripping the seeds out of tomatoes for a smooth soup or gazpacho.

While you may get a smoother soup, you won't get one that's as tasty as it could be. "It turns out the seed in [the tomato] jelly ... has three times more flavor compounds called glutamates than the flesh, so when you seed the tomato... you're actually throwing out most of the flavor," Kimball explains.

Glutamates are what give tomatoes that meaty, umami mouthfeel. They also give MSG its flavor, but that's for another day.

Kimball tells Montagne it's totally fine to bake with cold eggs straight from the fridge most of the time, despite the fact that many baking recipes call for room-temperature ingredients.

"For years I've made cakes with cold eggs and they come out OK. It does make a difference when you're making a cake that's heavily dependent on egg whites ... like angel food cakes," he says. (According to The Science of Good Cooking, that's because cold eggs don't whip as well as room-temperature eggs, and when Kimball and crew tested them, those "finicky" cakes didn't rise right and became too dense.)

But Montagne is skeptical about whether Kimball has fully embraced this idea.

"Your recipe [for fluffy yellow layer cake] includes, I quote, 'bring all the ingredients to room temperature before beginning this recipe,'" she says.

"There's an old expression, do as I say and not as I do," Kimball says, laughing. "I am mature enough to recognize that we've held onto these myths in the kitchen.... We can grow. We can learn, too," he says.

"A little bit of science goes a long way in the kitchen, and it can make a big difference."

For more science tips and tricks from Chris Kimball, listen to the entire Morning Edition interview.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.