Mouldering city built of bread is a metaphor for Earth without humans


Swedish artist Johanna Mårtensson created this installation depicting a cityscape made of bread in 2009, and photographed it as it decayed, creating a series of pictures representing the destiny of all human folly come the day that we make ourselves extinct and vanish from the face of the Earth:


I was inspired by an article about how well the earth would do without us. Within 500 years all buildings would be half fallen or fallen, perfect homes for animals and plants. The forrest would soon grow in cities. After hand buildings as well as pollutions would be taken care of by bacterias and micro-organisms. An ufo that came here in a couple of of hundred thousand years would not see many signs of that a gang of primates ones thought that they where the lords of the planet.

Decor Photoinstallation by Johanna Mårtensson (via Crazy Abalone)

Life in a chocolate factory versus life in a startup


Elaine Wherry took a break from working in San Francisco high-tech startups to work at Dandelion Chocolate, the chocolate maker/cafe that her husband co-founded. She calls her tenure at the chocolate factory her life as "an oompa loompa," and in a fascinating post, she writes about the differences and similarities between working in data-driven startups and in physical, retail-based hard-goods business. It's a wonderful study in contrasts.


For loops are a veritable miracle — At the chocolate factory, something breaks every single flippin’ day. Each morning I gave my evil eye to the roasters, melangers, temperers, wrapping machine, dishwasher, or anything with a screw, fuse, gear, glue, belt, or oil level and asked, “Okay, which one of you little buggers is going today?”

In comparison, code brings tears to my eyes. If that for loop worked yesterday, then barring catastrophic hardware failures or someone checking in code they shouldn’t, it’ll likely work today. That type of, “if you don’t touch it, it’ll keep working” certainty seems divine. I’ve always loved the Web but I have renewed appreciation for redundancy, unit testing, and monitoring now.

what i learned as an oompa loompa (via O'Reilly Radar)

Small batch artisanal high-fructose corn syrup

Matt sez, "Maya Weinstein is an artist who just finished her MFA at Parsons, with the awesomest thesis ever: a DIY kit for making your own High-Fructose Corn Syrup, the industrial sweetener that is, well, let's say problematic these days.

"Amazingly, HFCS is not available for consumers to buy, and as Weinstein discovered, making it yourself requires some pretty unusual (and expensive) components, like Glucose Isomerase. But it's a totally fascinating process, and only the first in what Weinstein hopes will be a series of 'citizen food science' kits."

DIY High-Fructose Corn Syrup by Artist Maya Weinstein

Sugar skull and bones


From November 2011, a set of photos documenting the creation of a sugar skull-and-bones set that can be served with macabre beverages, designed by Snow Violent and made by DR.HC.

Skull Sugar — from sketch to prototype. Part 1 (via Crazy Abalone)

Ice cream ad: "if you want nutrition, eat a carrot"


Wisconsin's Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream has some refreshingly honest ad-copy on the side of its vans. The photo was snapped by a Consumerist reader named David, and shows a van whose advert disclaims any nutritional merit, proudly proclaiming "gobs of rich Wisconsin cream" as well as lots of "real ingredients" (whatever those are). My own experience has been that eating food high in grass-fed animal fat is good for me, so that sounds about right to me -- though carrots are good, too!

Ice Cream Company Knows What You’re Here For: You Want Nutrition? Eat Carrots

Nutella's lawyers shut down World Nutella Day: STOP LIKING US SO MUCH!

Lawyers for Ferrero, SpA (makers of the Nutella spread) have sent a legal threat to Sara Rosso, who founded and maintains the World Nutella Day site, where they promote Nutella through recipes, tweets, stories, and (obviously) an annual day devoted to the sugary gloop. Rosso has capitulated and will no longer promote their products for them.

Seven years after the first World Nutella Day in 2007, I never thought the idea of dedicating a day to come together for the love of a certain hazelnut spread would be embraced by so many people! I’ve seen the event grow from a few hundred food bloggers posting recipes to thousands of people Tweeting about it, pinning recipes on Pinterest, and posting their own contributions on Facebook! There have been songs sung about it, short films created for it, poems written for it, recipes tested for it, and photos taken for it.

The cease-and-desist letter was a bit of a surprise and a disappointment, as over the years I’ve had contact and positive experiences with several employees of Ferrero, SpA., and with their public relations and brand strategy consultants, and I’ve always tried to collaborate and work together in the spirit and goodwill of a fan-run celebration of a spread I (to this day) still eat.

A Goodbye to World Nutella Day? (Thanks, Rebecca!)

Pancake arthopods


Pancakeist Nathan Shields polled his pals for their favorite athropods and then recreated them in pancake form. Crunchy!

Favorite Arthropods 1 (via Neatorama)

Ne plus ultra of retrogamer wedding cakes


This amazing retro-gamer wedding cake was made by Wedding Cakes By Nicole of Bunbury, Australia. The cake pays homage to many of the arcade greats:

I created a 3 tier square cake, with each of the sides representing a popular retro platform game. Topped off with a game off Pong, with the score depicting Stephen's "30" years. The board had a joystick, buttons and coin slot. Pacman (my favourite), Donkey Kong, Frogger & Tetris

Dimity asked me to create a cake for her Fiance, Stephen, who loves "old school" computer games. (via Geeks are Sexy)

Cake-topped parfait


A chain of Osaka cafes sells a crazy parfait, topped with a ginormous piece of cake:

On a recent day out in Osaka, our reporter stopped by a café and ordered a truly hard-core parfait. It wasn’t that the parfait was so big, and no, it didn’t contain any shocking ingredients. What blew our minds about this parfait was its topping.

It was a slice of cake, and it was so big it wasn’t even trying to fit into the glass. Our reporter had this sweet-tasting tag-team at the Semba branch of Osaka-based café MIOR.

Who Needs a Cherry on Top? Osaka Café Crowns its Parfaits with Cake [Casey Baseel/RocketNews24]

(via Super Punch)

Make bread by mixing ice cream with flour and baking


It appears that you can make delicious (and fantastically high-carb) bread by mixing melted ice-cream with self-rising flour and baking it. I'm willing to believe that this is totally yummy but I'm not going to try it:

1 Preheat oven to 350 F
2 Let ice cream soften at room temperature for 10-15 minutes.
< 3 In the bowl of your mixer combine ice cream with flour until the flour is incorporated.
4 Evenly distribute sprinkles in the bottom of a greased Bundt pan and scoop batter evenly on top.
5 Bake for 35 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
6 Invert and allow to cool completely.

Cake Batter Ice Cream Bread (via Neatorama)

Bake a Mean Spirited Censorship Pie with the Electronic Frontier Foundation

EFF is celebrating the new inductees into its Takedown Hall of Shame with a new cooking show! In this episode, EFF staffer Parker Higgins bakes a "Mean Spirited Censorship Pie" -- which is what all have to call the classic Southern dessert formerly known as "Derby Pie," now that Kern's Kitchen in Louisville is threatening to sue anyone who posts a family recipe with that name.

It's sarcastic, carbtastic, and informative -- delicious!

Baking With EFF: (Not) Derby Pie, the Trademarked Treat

HOWTO make a DNA model out of licorice and jellybabies


What better way to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the publication of Watson and Crick's landmark paper on the double helix structure of DNA than by making your own double-helix out of jellybabies and licorice? Dr Mark Lorch's method for making edible DNA models promises to capture the "elegant simplicity" of DNA.

You'll need:

Two long, flexible sweets, such as liquorice ribbons.

A few handfuls of soft, highly coloured sweets, such as jelly babies or marshmallows.

Cocktail sticks.

For advance bio-engineers, Lorch also explains how to extract the DNA from a kiwi fruit using things lying around your kitchen.

How to make a DNA double helix from jelly babies and liquorice [Dr Mark Lorch/Guardian]

(via Neatorama)

HOWTO turn a dead hard-drive into a cotton candy machine


Here's an unexpected use for a dead hard-drive: use its motor to power a candy-floss machine:

A Chinese engineer who operates a data recovery and hard drive repair center is being hailed as a genius after inventing a DIY candy floss machine made from a used hard disk. According to the instructions, all that is needed to create your own candy floss maker is a hard drive that can still power up, a round flat metal tin, six bicycle spokes, an aluminum can and a plastic basin. A series of photos demonstrating how to create this candy floss machine have made some sensation across China internet …

The key to the improvised cotton candy maker is the hard drive’s rotating platter. Most commercial cotton candy machines spin at around 3,450 rotations per minute, while modern hard drives operate at 5,400 rotations per minute or higher. We’re really admired this kind of DIY creation from a technical nerd …

Turning an Old Hard Disk Into a Candy Floss Machine [English, MicGadget]

技术宅拯救世界:用旧硬盘自制棉花糖机(图) [Chinese, tt.mop.com]

(via Neatorama)

Cake hotel whose rooms were filled with edible fixtures and decor


Last week, Tate & Lyle Sugars created a one-day pop-up cake hotel in Soho, where the rooms were stuffed with edible fixtures and furniture:

A Mediterranean-inspired bedroom, with edible furnishings, a caramel popcorn-filled bathtub, floating meringues and edible pearlescent popcorn bunting, all created using Light Soft Brown sugar. The perfect location for a midnight feast!

A Pirates of the Caribbean room, with a giant treasure chest full of edible pearls, ginger spiced doubloons and cutlasses, which visitors can spray gold themselves, and rum and raisin chocolate brownies and tea cakes – all made from Taste Experience Caribbean-inspired Light Muscovado sugar

A British-inspired Golden syrup sugar room, with a giant golden-syrup lion, patriotic treacle tarts in the shape of the British Isles and a giant tower of doughnuts

A Mayan-inspired room hidden in the cellar featuring a Mayan fudge temple, complete with floating meringue ‘clouds’, ‘sacrificial’ salted caramel and chocolate hearts, and Mayan-inspired carved gold cookies all made from Taste Experience Mayan-inspired golden caster sugar

A Mississippi-inspired ‘Mardi Gras’ room featuring a five foot long rainbow cake in the traditional colours of green, yellow & purple, gold baby heads and of course King Cakes

A Barbados-inspired library, with edible shells, and beautiful hand-painted cookies, fruit cakes and florentines showcased as museum features inside vintage glass jars, all made from Barbados inspired Dark Muscovado sugar

A Guyanese-inspired room, complete with a sea turtle cake, and cake ‘turtle eggs’ buried in mounds of Demerara sugar

A South Pacific-inspired room with a huge two metre high Easter Island statue, made entirely from chocolate mud cake baked using Golden Granulated sugar

SWEET DREAMS… WORLD’S FIRST CAKE HOTEL OPENS TO THE PUBLIC (via OhGizmo)

HOWTO bake anatomical heart-bread


Here's a fun set of instructions for baking anatomical heart-shaped bread that you rip apart and gorge upon:

Nothing says romance like ritual cannibalism. Use this anatomical heart pull apart loaf to pretend you’re vampires feasting on the heart of that asshole in HR who gave a promotion to Brad. Alternately, you could engage in a little Indiana Jones cosplay where the sexy archaeologist in your life can rescue you from having your heart ripped out by any other man. Gentlemen bakers, you could show up at your vegetarian girlfriend’s house triumphantly holding this and declaring you were successful in the hunt, so tonight you feast. There are so many ways to express your doughy love.

Bitchin’ Bread Battle Day 13: Valentine’s Day Anatomical Heart Pull Apart Bread (via Neatorama)