Sun August 9, 2015
The Salt

The Basted Egg: A Foolproof Play On The Poach

Originally published on Tue August 11, 2015 12:08 pm

A plate of huevos rancheros topped with a basted egg.
Lydia Thompson NPR

This summer, NPR is getting crafty in the kitchen. As part of Weekend Edition's Do Try This at Home series, chefs are sharing their cleverest hacks and tips — taking expensive, exhausting or intimidating recipes and tweaking them to work in any home kitchen.

This week: We learn an unusual technique for cooking eggs to give you a silky, yolky sauce for huevos racheros.

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Sat August 8, 2015
Author Interviews

Novel Highlights The Shocks Facing First-Generation College Students

Originally published on Sat August 8, 2015 5:33 pm

Lydia Thompson NPR

Jennine Capó Crucet was the first person in her family to be born in the United States. Her parents came to Florida from Cuba, and she grew up in Hialeah, a suburb of Miami that is 95 percent Hispanic.

For Crucet, going to Cornell was a bit of a shock — she was the first person in her family to attend college at all, let alone at a prestigious school in upstate New York.

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Sat August 8, 2015
Book Reviews

History Hijacks Life In 'All That Followed'

Courtesy of Henry Holt and Company

On the morning of March 11, 2004, ten bombs exploded on four commuter trains in Madrid. By the time the smoke had cleared, nearly 200 people had been killed; more than 1,800 were wounded, many gravely. It was one of the worst terrorist attacks in history; years later, several Islamists of North African heritage were convicted of the bombings.

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Sat August 8, 2015
Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!

Not My Job: Starlee Kine Gets Quizzed On Bugs Bunny

Originally published on Sat August 8, 2015 11:47 am

Starlee Kine is the creator and host of the Mystery Show podcast, which takes on — and solves — a mystery every week. (Not to be confused with last fall's hit podcast Serial, in which they explored a mystery without ever solving it.)

We invited Kine to play a game we're calling "What's up, Doc?" This last week marked the 75th anniversary of the debut of Bugs Bunny. We'll ask Kine three questions about the beloved cartoon character.

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Sat August 8, 2015
Fine Art

How A Candy Magnate Helped Bring A Holy Collection Home

Originally published on Mon August 10, 2015 3:46 pm

When the reservations were established and peace made between the Apsáalooke and the Lakota, there were frequent visits between the tribes. The result was that Lakota warbonnets, pipebags and even pipes were placed in Crow hands.
Jenae Neeson Courtesy of the Brinton Museum

At the foot of the Big Horn Mountains in northern Wyoming, a century-old ranch plays host to a small art museum. It's quite an idyllic setting — but just a few years ago, the Brinton Museum's finances didn't paint such a pretty picture.

An endowment set up in 1960 preserved the historic ranch near Sheridan, Wyo., as well as the bachelor-rancher Bradford Brinton's art collection. By 2008, though, it seemed that before long the museum would have to close, says the place's director, Ken Schuster.

"You could really see the writing on the wall," Schuster says.

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Sat August 8, 2015
Book Reviews

Life Through The Lens Of A Falling 'Fishbowl'

Lars von Trier's films Melancholia and Antichrist both open the same way, with catastrophe playing out in beautifully rendered, ultra slow motion. One calamity destroys the Earth and the other only claims the life of one toddler, but both films have the same feeling of presenting disaster as a sort of pregnant pause, played out so exquisitely that viewers have to appreciate the technique even as they're given plenty of time to register and mentally protest the terrible but inevitable results.

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Sat August 8, 2015
Goats and Soda

He's Just Woven The World's Finest Panama Hat. But Who Will Buy It?

Weaving is only the first step. From the weaver the hat passes through the hands of a series of artisans with Hemingway-esque titles: the rematador, the cortador, the apeleador and the planchador.
Roff Smith for NPR

Early one morning in June, a Panama hat weaver named Simon Espinal sat down to work at a wooden table in his house in Pile, an obscure village hidden in the hills near Montecristi, in Ecuador's steamy coastal lowlands.

Selecting eight threadlike strands of toquilla straw from a special stock of extraordinarily fine straw he had spent three weeks preparing, he separated them into four matched pairs with which he formed the cruzado — the crossed threads — that is the start of every Panama hat.

And then he began to weave.

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Sat August 8, 2015
Book News & Features

Beverly Jenkins Wraps Bitter History In Sweet Romance

Originally published on Sat August 8, 2015 12:52 pm

Beverly Jenkins says her mission is to write about the parts of black history you don't learn in school — and wrap them up in a good love story.
Greg Anthony

Historical romance is big business — it's the most popular subgenre of a billion-dollar industry. You can read about pirates, knights, Regency rakes and just about anything else. But for a long time, you couldn't read about black history. Until Beverly Jenkins came along.

Jenkins calls herself a "kitchen table historian." She doesn't have a history degree, but she does have a mission: To light up the parts of black history you don't learn in school.

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Fri August 7, 2015
Music Interviews

'May Allah Bless France!' Tells The Story Of France's Hip-Hop Gatekeepers

Originally published on Mon August 10, 2015 4:50 pm

French rapper Abd Al Malik's film May Allah Bless France! tells the story of a teenager finding music and Islam.
Courtesy of the artist

Think back to the 1990s — to movies like Boyz n the Hood or Menace II Society.

Now, imagine one of those movies shot in black and white, with prayer beads and scenes from a mosque. And imagine it all in French.

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Fri August 7, 2015
All Tech Considered

Shall I Compare Thee To An Algorithm? Turing Test Gets A Creative Twist

Originally published on Mon August 10, 2015 1:05 pm

A machine with superhuman intelligence is a staple of science fiction. But what about a machine with just ordinary human intelligence? A machine that's so humanlike in its behavior that you can't tell if it's a computer acting like a human, or a real human?

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