A recent issue of Food Processing magazine notes the advent of "the fourth meal phenomenon." This event was previously known as the late afternoon snack . . . The Fort restaurant in Morrison, Colo., has a new Web site at (www.thefort.com) that includes authentic Western recipes from food historian/restaurateur Sam Arnold . . . It's readily apparent that a lot of cooks are trying to become chefs when you thumb through "Peterson's Culinary Schools." The new guide lists 340 professional culinary programs in the United States.

Nebraska recently designated Kool-Aid as the official Nebraska State Beverage. The drink was invented in Hastings, Neb., in 1927 by Edwin Perkins . . . Semi-legendary rock guitarist Ted Nugent is now vending his own brand of beef jerky . . . By the way, May was National Salsa Month, National Hamburger Month, National Barbecue Month and National Egg Month. As a result, May was also National Digestive Diseases Aware-ness Month and National High Blood Pressure Month.Essayist Charles Dudley Warner once said: "Lettuce is like conversation: It must be fresh and crisp and so sparkling you barely notice the bitter in it."

- John Lehndorff