Two words: cooked cabbage

While the results are delicious, some food odors linger past their welcome. Here's a "green" idea to try. Moso Natural is a line of air purifying bags that claim to absorb and filter out odors, pollutants, allergens and bacteria, while also dehumidifying to prevent mildew, mold and moisture. Made from 100 percent bamboo charcoal, the bags are fragrance-free and nontoxic, making them useful for pet odors, lockers, tennis shoes, etc. The New Jersey-based company says a bag lasts up to two years and can then be recycled by cutting it open and spreading the charcoal into the garden. For a store locator, visit

Shhh! People salivating

Libraries have terrific cookbook collections, which we're reminded of with word that Raghavan Iyer and Phyllis Louise Harris will talk about their new cookbook at 10:30 a.m. Feb. 16 at the Maple Grove Library, 8001 N. Main St. ( "Asian Flavors: Changing the Tastes of Minnesota since 1875" (Minnesota Historical Society Press, $34.95) explores foods of the Pacific Rim, everything from chow mein and egg rolls to pad thai and pho. Harris, restaurant columnist for the Asian Pages for 20 years, collaborated with Iyer, who's written three acclaimed cookbooks on the cuisine of India. Books will be available for purchase and signing.

Beef cookoff

The theme of this year's National Beef Cook-Off is "Making the Most of MyPlate," emphasizing original healthy recipes. (The MyPlate initiative is led by the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion.) Categories are belt-tightening beef recipes, semi-homemade beef recipes, real-worldly, real simple beef and potato recipes, and craveable fresh beef and fresh California avocado recipes. Entry deadline is April 15, via The grand prize is $25,000.

A jingle contest!

If you know the tune to "The best part of waking up is Folgers in your cup," then this contest may be for you. Folgers and singer/songwriter Gavin DeGraw are seeking a new version of the jingle, which debuted in 1984 and has been sung in country, R&B, a cappella and gospel genres. The winner gets $25,000. For more info, visit Deadline is March 6.