There may be a sixth basic taste: starchiness

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New research suggests that humans have a sixth basic taste in addition to sweetness, sourness, saltiness, bitterness, and umami. According to Oregon State University food scientist Juyun Lim, "we can taste other chemicals that comprise foods such as starch degradation products and fatty acids." In a study published in the journal Chemical Senses, they report that "the ability to taste starch or its oligomeric hydrolysis products would be highly adaptive, given their nutritional value."

"Humans use starch as a major source of energy, which enables the body to perform its functions," Lim told CNN.

Other researchers' candidates for a sixth basic taste include fat and calcium. Read the rest

KettlePizza creates pizza making geniuses

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My wife and I held a pizza pie cook-off last weekend where we supplied the flour, dough and basic toppings.  We asked our guests to bring exotic items to personalize their creations and there was even a trophy on the line for the chef who made the best impression on our judge. 

What my friends didn't know was that they were actually play-testing my favorite new Weber BBQ attachment - The KETTLEPIZZA.

 

The KETTLEPIZZA is basically a metal sleeve that fits between the top and bottom of your existing kettle grill that forces heat to come up from the backside, over the top of the pizza and out the front opening.  In the past week I've learned that cooking authentic Neapolitan pizza isn't as tough as I thought it'd be and getting the grill over 700° was the key to making it happen.

To be honest, I had 3 rough starts with KETTLEPIZZA and spent about a week fine tuning my tools before getting things dialed in for the party.  Below are a few tips that will help you succeed on your first try:

 

Tip #1 

Visit Kettlepizza.com and pick their Weber grill accessory kit called The Serious Eats KettlePizza Special Edition Kit. I know that $399.95 seems pricey but believe me, since it comes with the cold rolled baking steel you'll be equipped for success from the get-go.  The cheaper kit that I picked up didn't have the baking steel and I had to purchase it separately which caused my first two attempts to be flops. Read the rest

Camouflage ice cream

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Brenham, Texas-based BlueBell Creameries has launched a new "Camo 'n Cream" camouflage ice cream. It's a combo, containing pistachio almond, milk chocolate and cream cheese flavors. The packaging features woodland pattern camouflage which I guess makes sense given the ice cream was launched on the first day of dove hunting season in texas. Yum?

(Houston Chronicle) Read the rest

Poop emoji cookie cutter

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Francesca4me has created arguably the best Poop Emoji Cookie Cutters on the market, and they come in four different sizes. They include depressions for the eyes and mouth that can be filled with white icing, and the thin lines they cut halfway into the cookie give them the most accurate-looking result. Read the rest

Watch a Brief History of Sriracha

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Natural color! Shake well! Named after a city in eastern Thailand!

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Protips: chefs explain how they dress up frozen pizza

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Five chefs shared their top tips for improving frozen pizza: the easiest and most plausible one on the list is to just top the thing with thin-sliced garlic before cooking, turning it into delicious roast garlic topping by the time it's done. Read the rest

Starve #2: Brian Wood lands the tale in a screaming dive and a perfect touchdown

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Brian Wood's Starve, Volume One (collecting issues 1-5) was the best, meanest new graphic novel debut since Transmetropolitan; now, with Starve, Volume Two (issues 6-10), Wood brings the story in for a conclusion that is triumphant and wicked and eminently satisfying, without being pat.

Werner Herzog blurbs a salt packet

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Omnivore Salt is apparently so delicious that filmmaker Werner Herzog not only did a blurb on the package, but he even narrated a mini-documentary about its creator, blacksmith Angelo Garro, in his classic style: Read the rest

Good Belly PlusShot drink package looks like it's barfing probiotics

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UPSO says, "I enjoy puking it into my fruit smoothy every day. I like the strawberry flavor the best."

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In prison, "punitive frugality" causes ramen to beat cigarettes as currency

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According to a new University of Arizona study, instant ramen is the most valuable currency at one US prison. For example, a two .59 packets of ramen could be traded for one $10 sweatshirt while one ramen packet was worth "five tailor-made cigarettes." Why did the noodles overtake cigarettes as the most valuable currency? Because the cafeteria food is terrible and it's getting worse. Sociologist Michael Gibson-Light calls it "punitive frugality." From The Guardian:

The study paints a bleak picture of the state of food available at the prison. Gibson-Light found that black-market food became more valuable after control over food preparation switched from one private firm to another in the early 2000s.

“That change was part of a cost-cutting measure,” Gibson-Light said. “With that change that resulted in a reduction in the quantity of the food the inmates were receiving.”

Inmates at the prison Gibson-Light studied went from receiving three hot meals a day to two hot meals and one cold lunch during the week, and only two meals for the whole day on the weekend...

“[Money] doesn’t change unless there’s some drastic change to the value in people using it,” he said. The shift from tobacco to ramen highlights how dire the nutritional standards at prisons has become, he added.

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Watch the (very weird) first USSR television commercial

This surreal advertisement for corn from 1964 is reportedly the USSR's first TV commercial.

Over at r/ObscureMedia, amer_amer kindly offers this translation:

If you would like to be healthy, fed for a hundred years, ask with a kind word at restaurants and cafeterias (and) recieve dinner wait, sit down, don't rush wait... (and) recieve dinner. Chef: where are you from? Corn: (unintelligible)... We were grown in azerbaijan, in a southern warm country, in the virgin lands of kasakhstan. Chef: understood. so what do you want? Corn: we want to get on the menu. Chef: i'm sorry, and i'm not kicking you out, but i'm not changing the menu. (The dishes start sliding) And the salads, and the soups, and (dishes) made from maize groats, and with sugar: porridge, pudding and cakes, and appetizers and garnish. Peace for all (i think). What a dish, absolutely spectacular! Every day will be prepared! Chef: and let me tell you something, all these dished can be made easily by any hostess (as in housewife).

(Thanks, UPSO!)

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Play Morissey and PETA's new anti-meat mobile game

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PETA and Morissey released This Beautiful Creature Must Die, an anti-meat game where the goal is to save animals from slaughter. Play it below. The soundtrack is a chiptune version of, you guessed it, The Smith's "Meat is Murder."

"This game is the biggest social crusade of all, as we safeguard the weak and helpless from violent human aggression," Moz said. "You don't get that from Pokémon Go."

(Rolling Stone)

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Stop motion animation: This paper ramen looks delicious!

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Yelldesign: "We thought it would fun to make a complete meal from start to finish, using only paper. Everything you see is made from paper, except for the hands."

See more of their Papermeals here.

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Balkan donkey cheese sounds really scrummy

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Slobodan Simić is former Serbian parliamentarian who retired to become a conservationist who keeps a herd of Balkan rescue donkeys on the Zasavica Special Nature Reserve near Belgrade, along with wild pigs, cows and beavers, all Balkan species that had dwindled and that he's dedicated to bringing back. Read the rest

Mold hard boiled eggs into a bunny and a bear cub

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This video shows how to turn hard boiled eggs into cute animals with plastic molds, and what I'm guess is soy sauce. Amazon sells the pair for $2, including shipping.

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First-ever Michelin star for street food awarded to Singaporean hawker stalls

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Hong Kong Soya Sauce Chicken Rice and Noodle and Hill Street Tai Hwa Pork Noodle sell lunch dishes for less than USD2.00, but that's not a predictor of the food's quality, as both restaurants have been awarded Michelin stars for their cuisine. Read the rest

Redman talks about that time he took acid and got shocked with an electric cattle prod

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“He shocked my head out my goddamned mustache.” Reginald "Reggie" Noble, aka Redman, on First We Feast: “The Hot Ones,“ eating hot wings and answering “even hotter” questions. Such a weird premise for a show, but it totally works.

In this episode, right around 9 minutes in, the famed rapper talks about this one time he performed, took LSD, and got shocked with an electric cattle prod.

[via Kwame Opam]

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