Where Restaurant Reservations Come From: Why did the practice develop? In the startup terms of our day, what problem did the institution of restaurant reservations solve? Well, the answer boils down to... sex and propriety.
NPR's Planet Money explains the history of the sales tax in the United States by tracing what kinds of sandwiches get taxed and why: How the Burrito Became a Sandwich. Bonus: In-N-Out Burger history in the podcast.
Tip The Pizza Guy is the most exhustive, detailed, old-school website about Tipping and Pizza Delivery I have ever seen. (last seen in 2001 and still being updated.)
An Oxford University study of over 50,000 participants, published this month in the open-access, peer-reviewed journal Climatic Change: Dietary greenhouse gas emissions in meat-eaters are twice as high as those in vegans.
Declaring 2014 the European Year against Food Waste, the European Parliament has adopted a non-legislative resolution that called for action to halve food waste by 2025 and improve access to food by the needy. French grocery store Intermarche got on board with a delightful campaign aimed at convincing people that appearances don't matter when it comes to great tasting foods and increasing awareness of food waste. The video is particularly charming.
How to Eat Like a Cuban
"It wasn't until I was adopted into an enormous Cuban-American family, thanks to my fiancé , that I learned how to spot the Cubans—and now that I can, I see them everywhere. In three years, my extremely white self has gone from not being able to pronounce dulce de leche (don’t match those ch sounds—that’s a basic move) to knowing that I like my arroz con pollo asopao (a soupier preparation that ends up almost risotto-like).[more inside]
Some of the stereotypes are true: Cubans love to party, and they can eat. Backyard pig roasts are the traditional way to celebrate pretty much any special occasion—this is a country whose two greatest exports (if they could export them) are cigars and sugar.
Bottom line: If you find some real Cubans, it's in your best interest to make friends, fast. Here's what you need to know to keep up without looking like a chump."
The Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery is an annual weekend conference discussing food, its history, and culture. Since 1981 the papers presented at the Symposium have been collected into a conference volume called the Proceedings of the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery, most of which have been made available for free in their entirety via Google Books. Each volume consists of about 25-40 papers surrounding the theme of that year's Symposium (e.g. Eggs, Authenticity, or The Meal). [more inside]
Food is life. It unites us all. Here at Global Voices, we love food, so we bring you eight yummy food blogs from Sub-Saharan Africa.
Food in Every Country provides information on the foodways of several dozen countries (not all of them, despite the site's name), with brief explanations of their culture and history -- and recipes! [more inside]
"I enjoy buffets. I wouldn't say love buffets, but it's a very reasonable way to eat out." (SLYT) [more inside]
The Girl Scouts published the first recipe for Some Mores in 1927, and it just took off. The s'more has become an All-American campfire treat … and the combination of warm gooey marshmallow, melty chocolate, and crisp graham cracker has inspired a bunch of other s'more-inspired recipes. I give you: Triple dipped apples. Pie. Popcorn. Mini donuts. Stuffed cookies. Dip. Ice cream. Chocolatier ice cream. Homemade pop tarts. Macarons. Cups. Fudge. Krispies Bar. Truffles. Cheesecake. Pie pops. Bites. Milkshake. Empanadas. Trifles. Frozen. [more inside]
Looking for American recipes to take to tonight's 4th of July party? It's easy to find historic recipes. But why not look to America's great fiction writers instead? [more inside]
"Pastry work takes a level of skill, precision and rigor that I lacked in spades. I could’ve maybe become a decent pastry cook, with months of practice and a patient boss, but I was in no way qualified to be a pastry chef. I gave it my best effort, for three days, until the chef-owner realized her mistake and fired me. The place closed in less than 6 months. I never got paid." Laurie Woolever at The Billfold talks about how she went from Botantical Garden Intern to Anthony Bourdain's assistant.
The last decade has seen an explosion of interest in farmer's markets, healthful cooking, and dismantling the industrial food system, spurred in large part by Michael Pollan's 2006 book The Omnivore's Dilemma. But the "food movement" of today tends to be dominated by affluent urbanites, and messages from Brooklyn and San Francisco often don't reach--or resonate with--the majority of places in between.Guernica contributor Meara Sharma interviews food journalists Jane Black and Brent Cunningham about the juxtaposition of American working-class culture, Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution, and the idealized pastoral leanings of the modern-day food movement: Servings of Small Change. [more inside]
One-third of the food on our plate now relies on just one pollinator — the honeybee. And it’s dying. The land of milk and honey is fast becoming a land without wildflowers, thanks to insecticides called neonicotinoids. "In the past decade, in most states and especially in the Midwest, the amount of honey produced by each hive has crashed. That’s clear evidence that bees are seriously impaired, said Susan Kegley, a pesticide researcher in Berkeley, Calif., who works with beekeepers. In Minnesota, for example, production per hive has plummeted by one-third in the past decade."
Take Me to Sanborns: Swiss Enchiladas and Race in Mexico City.
One afternoon early in their stay, [Jack] Johnson and Etta – who was white – walked into the famous Sanborns cafe in Mexico City's historic center for lunch. But before they could even place their order, owner Walter Sanborn refused to serve Johnson on racial lines. Johnson went and found a few of the generals he had met and told them what happened. They returned to Sanborns together and all sat down at the counter. They ordered ice cream. Everybody was served except for Johnson.
Chili's Has Installed More Than 45,000 Tablets in Its Restaurants — When your server is a screen, you spend more money. Hungry? No human server in sight? With a flick of your wrist, you can instantly order more appetizers and drinks, indulge your whim for Baby Back Ribs, let the kids play games, read the news, pay your check (with a default tip), and get done faster. Be sure to save room for some Cinnamon Molten Cake: doesn't it look tasty?
Burritos provide a good way to experiment precisely because they represent a relatively narrow range of experience. There are different burrito styles across the country — more than you might gather if your burrito-eating ambitions have never ventured beyond Taco Bell. But there are fewer parameters to control for when rating burritos than when comparing movies, or doctors, or colleges.
Nathaniel Read ("Nate") Silver is launching a national, 64-restaurant Burrito Bracket
Nathaniel Read ("Nate") Silver is launching a national, 64-restaurant Burrito Bracket
Sweetness is code for feminine. It’s code for not being able to handle “reality” and having to cover it up.
The psychology of Soylent and the prison of first-world food choices
People are born with neither the ability to cook nor compile; both are taught, and chastising even an adult for not knowing how to cook a healthy meal makes about as much sense as chastising an adult for not knowing how to code or how to compile an application from source. Each of those two different ridicules demonstrates an identical lack of empathy and an accompanying equally stunning sense of privilege that you should probably check immediately.
The Art of Antarctic Cooking
What comprises “Antarctic culinary history,” Anthony writes, is “a mere century of stories of isolated, insulated people eating either prepackaged expedition food or butchered sea life.” It helped if some of these isolated, insulated people knew their way around the kitchen. “The cook, however good or bad, is an artist whose simple vocation is to make others lives happier,” observed chef Raymond Oliver. More magician than artist, a cook with an Antarctic expedition ranked as one of its most important members. His kitchen little more than a Primus stove, his ingredients either canned or scrounged, he conjured nourishing dishes as if from the gelid air.[more inside]
To commemorate the 300th Anniversary of the original Longitude Prize (won by John Harrison with the invention of a clock that could keep time at sea), UK charity Nesta has launched a new £10million prize to encourage inventors and scientists to find a solution to one of six problems facing the world. [more inside]
Mother Jones reports on the annual California Dietetic Association conference, where highlights included a panel titled "Sweeteners in Schools" sponsored by the Corn Refiner's Association, and a lunch catered by McDonald's.
Meat Atlas: facts and figures about the animals we eat
Molecular gastronomy at its most basic: Chef Heston Blumenthal makes chocolate mousse in five minutes using nothing but chocolate and water. (Heston Blumenthal (previously, pre-previously) [SLYT]
To help promote their business selling vouchers usable at various UK restaurants, RestauarantsChoice.co.uk set up a subsite, "The Internet Foodie Database" with a list of the Top 250 Food Flicks. Surprisingly, #1 on the list with a rating of 9.3 was "Bill and Ted's Bogus Jerky", the sequel to "Bill and Ted's Egg Salad Adventure", which only rated a 6.4. But this was far from the first effort to create a definitive list of Movie/Food Puns... [more inside]
Conservative bon vivant Michael Anton writes about the thrill of cooking in an haute cuisine restaurant, as well as the rise of celebrity chef culture and personalities like Anthony Bourdain and Michael Ruhlman.
Ever thought about making ramen in your hotel's coffee maker? Well, this lady cooks everything in her coffee maker (also available in svenska). [more inside]
someone ate this is a food blog that celebrates the hilarity of cooking mishaps, bad food photography, and the grossest things people shove down their throats. [more inside]
From grilled kidneys to gruel to open faced sandwiches to sliced up grapefruits, photos of literature's most memorable meals.
The trailer for the 2012 documentary The Raw and the Cooked stands alone as a work of art, by capturing perfectly the best scenes from this beautiful film. Created by German filmmaker Monika Treut. Background.
Fanesca is a traditional soup from Ecuador and is a special soup or stew because it is only prepared once a year during Easter. From a blog of Ecuadorian dishes by Layla Pujol. A few ceviches.
This video is an eight minute tutorial on how to carve an Iberian ham. You might feel the need to pause it for a drink and a plate of jamon at your nearest tapas.
His recipe calls for a bustard stuffed with a turkey stuffed with a goose stuffed with a pheasant stuffed with a chicken stuffed with a duck stuffed with a guinea fowl stuffed with a teal stuffed with a woodcock stuffed with a partridge stuffed with a plover stuffed with a lapwing stuffed with a quail stuffed with a thrush stuffed with a lark stuffed with an ortolan bunting stuffed with a garden warbler stuffed with an olive stuffed with an anchovy stuffed with a single caper - The Roti Sans Pareil or Roast Without Equal.
Henry and Caitlin.....met over several glasses of rose and quickly recognized their shared passion for all things food, photography, travel, and art. Their collaborations have spanned a decade, and they continue to push the boundaries always attempting to find a balance between beauty and the far fetched. With food as their favored medium they always manage to turn the mundane into works of art. [more inside]
While CNN is known for its flashy technology displays like holograms of Will.I.Am and its glossy map displays, not everything about the network is so up-to-date: the CNN Interactive: In-Depth Food website appears to have remained unchanged since 2001. via
Monsanto Is Going Organic in a Quest for the Perfect Veggie - "The lettuce, peppers, and broccoli—plus a melon and an onion, with a watermelon soon to follow—aren't genetically modified at all. Monsanto created all these veggies using good old-fashioned crossbreeding, the same technology that farmers have been using to optimize crops for millennia. That doesn't mean they are low tech, exactly. Stark's division is drawing on Monsanto's accumulated scientific know-how to create vegetables that have all the advantages of genetically modified organisms without any of the Frankenfoods ick factor." [more inside]
you will so want to make some up...like about a dozen..or two! Chili Relleno simply means ‘stuffed chilies’ that form a part of the Mexican cuisine. This dish traces its origins to the city of Puebla and consists of roasted poblano pepper, a mild pepper variety named after the city it comes from. Sometimes instead of poblano pepper, hatch green chile, Anaheim, pasilla or even jalapeño chili peppers are used. Commonly, queso Chihuahua or queso Oaxaca cheese is used for the stuffing. Generally, masa flour or egg whites with a pinch of salt is used as the batter for the chili relleno dish. [more inside]
"The idea that Medieval people drank beer or wine to avoid drinking bad water is so established that even some very serious scholars see no reason to document or defend it; they simply repeat it as a settled truth. In fact, if no one ever documents the idea, it is for a very simple reason: it's not true."
Perhaps you would like many pictures of mutant vegetables, or a look back on how animals have been perceived or a short guide to the museum of supernatural history. If so, Uli Westphal has you covered.
In 1929, Italian artist (author of The Futurist manifesto) Filippo Tommaso Marinetti opened a restaurant, La Taverna del Santo Palato [Tavern of the Holy Palate] in Turin. In 1930/31, Marinetti went on a polemical crusade against pasta, decrying it as holding the Italian people back. In 1932, he wrote La Cuicina Futurista [The Futurist Cookbook]. Part manifesto, part cookbook, all promotional, it contained a host of sensational delights, like "Chicken Fiat": chicken roasted with steel ball bearings, on a bed of whipped cream, as well as desciptions of banquets, and a recounting of his success against pasta. [more inside]