Where to Celebrate World Book Day

Categories: Holidays

Courtesy of Books & Books Facebook
Today is World Book and Copyright Day. It was first organized and celebrated by UNESCO in 1995. The date April 23 was selected to coincide with a Spanish festival honoring legendary author Miguel de Cervantes and also the anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. Today, more than 100 countries commemorate the occasion.

South Florida has plenty of independent bookstores and caf├ęs that are perfect for paying homage to one of our favorite pastimes. No battery required.

It's time to cozy up with a book at one of these local haunts.

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Five Eco-Friendly Food Products to Try in Honor of Earth Day

Categories: Holidays

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Flickr/cc
Seriously, the way we treat Mother Earth could easily be considered elderly abuse. We've pillaged her precious resources, choked her water with plastic crap, and changed her climate via cattle waste. Ugh.

But with Earth Day right around the corner, now is the time to show Mom we're not the worst offspring ever -- and we can do so with our stomachs. Check out this list of sustainable, eco-friendly food-related goodies that'll ease your conscience and please your palate.

See also: Screw Monsanto, Grow Your Own Veggies on the Patio With Earthbox

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Five Must-Try Rabbit Dishes in Miami

Carina Ost
Braised Florida rabbit
Beneath the floppy ears and cotton-ball tail of a rabbit is some seriously delicious meat. It truly does taste like chicken -- only leaner and slightly sweeter. Or perhaps it's like a more healthful duck.

Other bonuses: Because rabbit is still a "boutique meat," most local restaurants use Florida rabbits from family-run farms where the animals are raised on a clean herbivore diet without the use of hormones or steroids. Plus, there appears to be no shortage, as we all know how well rabbits procreate.

If this season's offering of chocolate bunnies -- Easter is this Sunday, April 20 -- has you jonesing for the real savory deal or you simply want to taste the meat for the first time, we have five must-try rabbit dishes.

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Four Seasons' 1,700-Pound Chocolate Easter Wonderland

Categories: Holidays

Courtesy of Four Seasons Miami
Four Seasons' pastry chef Keith Wallace makes a town out of chocolate.
Ever wonder what nearly 2,000 pounds of chocolate looks like?

Well, it's pretty much like you would imagine: a land of giant colorful eggs and sweet toadstools.

At least that's how Four Seasons Hotel Miami's pastry chef Keith Wallace envisions it.

See also: Easter Brunch in Miami

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Passover Special Dinners in Miami

Categories: Holidays

Courtesy of BLT
Passover brisket -- better than bubbe.
Sundown April 14 marks the first night of Passover.

For Jewish people around the world, this eight-day holiday remembers their exodus from Egypt more than 3,000 years ago. Freed from slavery, our ancestors are said to have fled into the desert and could not bake their bread, which turned out hard and flat. For that reason, matzoh is eaten during Passover.

Of course, every holiday has its own food customs. The first two nights of Passover, many families gather at the dinner table for Seder, where the story of Passover is retold and a giant feast is served.

Although many kosher restaurants close during Passover, many restaurants offer more secular interpretations of Passover favorites. Meals featuring slow-cooked brisket, gefilte fish, and cakes made with matzoh meal can be enjoyed by all. Here are some restaurants offering Passover dinners this week. Reservations are suggested, and gratuities are generally not included.

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Peeps Are Popping Up: Dunkin' Donuts, Bocce Bar, and Tongue & Cheek

Categories: Holidays

Carina Ost
Peeps on a doughnut.
Some people get excited for candy corn in October and candy canes in December. But when it comes to Easter candy, there is a divide. Some go for chocolate bunnies, others like Cadbury eggs, and yet others prefer Peeps. We are Team Peeps all the way.

We like our Peeps, like we like our peeps -- bright, marshmallowy, and sugar-dusted. Where can you see these little chickadees popping up in Miami? We have the answer!

See also: Easter Brunch in Miami

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Easter Brunch in Miami

Categories: Holidays

Courtesy of Tongue & Cheek
She eats like a rabbit.
Easter is Sunday, April 20, and whether you attend sunrise services, go on a hunt for colored eggs, visit the Easter Bunny, or sleep in, one thing is for certain: You'll need some fuel afterward.

Luckily, many of Miami's best restaurants serve Easter brunch. We're talking elaborate spreads filled with all manner of goodies -- from raw oysters and bloody marys to spring lamb and warm pastries.

Here's a list of offerings. Most prices don't reflect tax and gratuity, and reservations are strongly suggested.

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Kosher Blogger Whitney Fisch and Three Others Release Modern E-Cookbook for Passover

Photo courtesy of Whitney Fisch
Cashew "cream" tomato soup with sun-dried tomato relish from 4 Bloggers Dish: Passover; Modern Twists on Traditional Flavors.
"Modern" isn't a word typically associated with Passover. For starters, the holiday, which begins April 14 this year, commemorates the Jews' escape from slavery in Egypt thousands of years ago and is rife with age-old traditions. And when it comes to the food served throughout the eight days, many will tell you their families have been eating the exact same stuff since they can remember.

What's more, options are limited by Passover being the holiday of unleavened bread, where the only grain product permitted is matzo (unleavened bread). Though much can be made from matzo's byproducts, such as matzo flour and matzo meal (coarsely ground matzo), it's easy to tire of it all around day three.

See also: Help Zak the Baker Open A Wynwood Bakery and Cafe Through Kickstarter Campaign

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Rolling Pin Bakery in Surfside Offers a Variety of Hamantaschen for Purim

Carina Ost
Three corner cookies.
Before you wear green on Monday, if you celebrate Purim you may be also wearing a costume on Saturday evening. This Jewish holiday has its own festive drinking and masquerading, but one of the sweeter traditions, amongst mainly Ashkenazi Jews, is the consuming of hamantaschen.

Hamantaschen are triangle-shaped filled pastries that are said to resemble the hat (or according to some, the pocket or ears) of Haman, a man who set out to kill the Jews in ancient Persia. Fortunately, Queen Esther and Mordecai foiled his efforts and you eat these cookies to commemorate the defeat of the villain of Purim.

If you want to try one of these celebratory cookies, head to Rolling Pin Bakery in Surfside, located a block away from The Shul and right next to Josh's Deli.

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Get Your Green On With These Four St. Patrick's Day Celebrations

Get bombed.
Irish folk may not constitute a large percentage of Miami-Dade County residents, but the Magic City doesn't lack in St. Patrick's Day celebrations.

In fact, St. Patty's Day is one of our favorite ethnic holidays, tied for first place with Cinco de Mayo. The fact that you are practically expected to imbibe copious amounts of alcohol on these two holidays may have something to do with their popularity, but who are we to judge? We also wish that green beer was available year-round.

See also: St. Patrick's Day in Miami: Where to Get Your Shamrock On

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