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Monday, December 31, 2012

The Week in Preview: “Youth is when you’re allowed to stay up late on New Year’s Eve. Middle age is when you’re forced to.” – Bill Vaughan

Week in Preview

Monday

A perfect setting ...

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Monday

A perfect setting

To ensure a truly enjoyable celebration, atmosphere is everything. Ring in the new year in one of the prettiest towns in the U.S. (according to Forbes Traveler) at First Night Portsmouth from 4 p.m.-midnight at locations throughout the city.

Highlights of the evening include puppet performances by Lindsay Bezich at The North Church, World Fusion Jazz at Temple Israel and a battle of the bands at Portsmouth Middle School, as well as a fireworks display at 7:30 p.m. over South Mill Pond. A street dance will be held at Pleasant Street at Market Square starting at 5 p.m., with a countdown to midnight.

First Night buttons, which grant admission to the event’s indoor venues, can be purchased at the button booth in Market Square and are $25 for adults, $2 for children younger than 12. For a complete schedule and a map of the event, visit www.proportsmouth.org/firstnight.cfm.

Wednesday

What lies beneath

We may be nicknamed the Granite State, but that’s not the only rock you’ll find here. Get acquainted with our state’s subsurface bounty at an interactive display of New Hampshire mineral specimens through Jan. 15 at the Amherst Town Library, 14 Main St.

The brainchild of Amherst resident Tom Mortimer, the display features 293 specimens of minerals found in New Hampshire. Mortimer has been actively field collecting New England minerals for 35 years and was a member of the Nashua Mineral Society from 1974 until its disbandment in 2010.

The exhibit will be open during regular library hours. For more information, visit www.amherst.lib.nh.us or call 673-2288. To learn more about the exhibit, visit www.mindatnh.org.

Thursday

Cast your net wide

Looking to expand your fishing beyond local waters? Get the inside scoop on fishing in Idaho and Montana at a presentation by licensed New Hampshire fishing guide Jim Norton at 7 p.m. at the Nashua Public Library, 2 Court St.

Norton, who took a pack trip to St. Joe’s Lodge in Idaho’s Bitterroot Mountains and spent three days in a drift boat on the Missouri River, will share how to get to the most coveted fishing locations, plus how to catch the most fish and take in the finest scenery while you’re there.

Arrive at 6 p.m. to see videos about New Hampshire smallmouth bass and Salmon River steelhead before the presentation.

This free event is part of the library’s Fish 2013 series. For more information, visit www.nashualibrary.org or call 589-4600.

Saturday

Food for thought

Today we mark the passing of a man who has filled the stomachs of more college students than any dining hall chef: Momofuku Ando, the inventor of instant noodles and Cup Noodle. He died of heart failure at the age of 96.

Ando was born Wu Pai-fu on March 5, 1910, in Kagi (now Chiayi), Taiwan. At that time, Taiwan was part of the Empire of Japan. His grandparents owned a small textiles shop, which inspired him to open a textiles company of his own.

Ando’s first visit to Japan was a business trip to Osaka in 1933. He ultimately settled in Ikeda and became a Japanese citizen after World War II. The food shortage in Japan after the war convinced Ando to go into the food industry. While walking along the streets of Osaka on a particularly cold evening, he passed a line of hungry people waiting in front of a noodle stall. The line stretched for 20 or 30 meters.

It was then Ando concluded that no one should have to wait that long for a bowl of noodles and, on a deeper level, that “peace will come to the world when the people have enough to eat.”

He began experimenting with the idea of inexpensive yet tasty noodles that were also easy to prepare. His first instant noodle product, Chicken Ramen, debuted in 1958, and was the first product of its kind.

Ando chose chicken for the first flavor of instant noodles because of its distinction as a globally acceptable food. “Hindus may not eat beef and Muslims may not eat pork,” Ando wrote, “but there is not a single culture, religion or country that forbids the eating of chicken.”

After the successful reception of Chicken Ramen, Ando continued to experiment, introducing Cup Noodle in 1971 and making instant noodles even easier to prepare. While Chicken Ramen has to be boiled in a pot with water and flavoring, all you have to do to make Cup Noodle (which comes, as its name implies, in a cup) is add boiling water.

Today, Ando’s company, Nissin, makes a variety of instant noodle products. If the enduring success of Ando’s noodles isn’t enough of a testament to his impact on culinary culture, you can visit The Instant Ramen Museum in Ikeda, Japan.

Adding water to The Week in Preview (written by Teresa Santoski) will not produce tasty instant noodles – only soggy newsprint. Know of an event worthy of filling this space? Call 594-6466 or email tsantoski@nashuatelegraph.com. Information should be submitted at least two weeks prior to the event. Follow TWiP, Tete-a-tete and Teresa’s articles at twitter.com/Telegraph_TS.