The first discovery of fossilized fruits from the Solanaceae (nightshade) family, representing a new species of lantern fruit, has been made by paleobotanists researching Eocene plant diversity in Gondwanan Patagonia. The specimens, since dubbed Physalis infinemundi, were extraordinarily well-preserved in the surrounding 52.2-million year old rock, dating the existence of the Physalis genus back 40 million years earlier than scientists had previously believed. [more inside]
Why the healthy school lunch program is in trouble. [The Washington Post]
Student E114 is a case in point. E114 -- the identification code she was assigned by researchers studying eating habits at her public elementary school somewhere in the Northeast -- left the lunch line one day carrying a tray full of what looked like a balanced meal: chicken nuggets, some sort of mushy starch, green beans and milk. Exactly 13 minutes later she was done. The chicken nuggets and the starch were gone. But the green beans? Still there in a neat pile and headed straight for the trash. Before/after photos of what students ate.[more inside]
Radu Zaciu photographs fruits and vegetables in a different light—one emanating from their core. [more inside]
Lollipop Kale Is the Best New Vegetable You’ve Never Heard Of. Lollipop kale is a hybrid of kale and Brussels sprouts that was developed in Britain and is now becoming available in the US and Australia. Branded as "kalettes" in the US, the plant known in Britain as "flower sprouts" is also available as seeds for gardeners who want to give it a try. The first new vegetable in 16 years, it's being brought to the US by the same grower who introduced broccolini (the most recent new vegetable). Like broccolini and broccoflower, lollipop kale is the result of traditional plant breeding and selection. [more inside]
SLBBC - Three cheers for the onion: onions are eaten and grown in more countries than any other vegetable but rarely seem to receive much acclaim. It's time to stop taking the tangy, tear-inducing bulb for granted and give it a round of applause. [more inside]
It's wintertime in the northern hemisphere, and the seasonal chill is taking hold. With the year's harvests complete and the earth freezing or frozen, now is the perfect time to plan next year's garden. [more inside]
How to Cook Vegetables. How to Flavor with Spices. How to Flavor with Fresh Herbs. How to Maximize Flavor using the Flavor Star. An international guide to Aromatics.
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]
sproutrobot.com is just the thing for all of the gardeners who feel the walls starting to close in. Give it your ZIP code and sproutrobot will do the rest. [more inside]
"Tell me what you eat, and I'll tell you what you are." -- Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin [more inside]
"The semantic mission for me is to have “vegetarian” become an adjective that describes food rather than a noun labeling a person." An interview with Mollie Katzen, author of the iconic Moosewood Cookbook. (Includes a recipe for Vegetarian Tan-Tan Noodles from her newest cookbook, The Heart of the Plate: Vegetarian Recipes for a New Generation.)
The Ministry Of Food was a British government ministerial posts separated from that of the Minister of Agriculture. A major task of the latter office was to oversee rationing in the United Kingdom arising out of World War II. They made many newsreels and PSAs to inform the citizenry how to use the food rationing system: Rationing is introduced in 1939 The new ration books are coming! Cod Liver Oil Here's spud in your eye Don't cut that bread! DON'T WASTE FOOD! Dig For Victory! Milk is here! In addition, some short films instructed people in how to best use the new rationing system : Two Cooks And A Cabbage How To Make Tea Rabbit Pie Buying black market meat: a Partner in CRIME A US view explaining UK rationing to the States.
Fuck You, Broccoli - A non-judgmental outpouring of spite for vile vegetables, by MeFi's own MChelly. [via mefi projects]
In September 2011, Welshman Ian Neale, claimed to have grown the world's heaviest swede. This bold claim caught the eye of Snoop Dogg who invited him via youtube to attend his gig in Cardiff so they could chat about horticultural matters. [more inside]
Mukimono [wiki] is the artistic carving of mangoes, pumpkins but mostly watermelons, watermelons, watermelons and more watermelons into beautiful and maybe even fractal patterns. Not to be confused with Lynchian [previously] carving of foul-mouthed potatoes. [MLYT]
The Mutato Archive is a collection of non-standard fruits, roots and vegetables, displaying a dazzling variety of forms, colours and textures, that only reveal themselves when lawfully enforced standards cease to exist.
Our minds boggle at how the wolf could become the chihuahua, the Saint Bernard, the poodle and the Komondor. Artificial selection was likewise responsible for transforming the humble wild mustard plant Brassica oleracea into cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and the breathtaking fractal Romanesco, all in the span of a few centuries. [more inside]
Sit back and enjoy the many Italian recipes Great Chicago Italian Recipes.com has to offer. This site will provide you with a culinary adventure into the world of Italian food and wine. Choose from poultry, beef, vegetables, pasta, and sooo much more. Looking to finish off that perfect meal? Try Adriana's Italian Gourmet Cookies. [more inside]
The recreation of London's skyline using fruits and vegetables is best understood through a "making of" video. (via)
Canning makes a comeback. Is it just another foodie trend? Or is canning back for good? [more inside]
Ever wanted to play a white radish like a flute? Or maybe a carrot clarinet? Or perhaps a cucumber trumpet?
Wildman Steve Brill: The man who ate Central Park. Once arrested by undercover park rangers in a sting Wildman Steve Brill has been foraging in public spaces, including Central Park, for over 26 years. [more inside]
Allotments: how to get one, and what to grow in it once you've got it. Lots of people have allotments. Lots. Geddit?
FruitAndVeggieGuru – everything you need to know about the delicious fruits and vegetables you enjoy. Answers about how to lower your cholesterol or how to prepare asparagus. You’ll find loads of background and variety information, nutrition specifics, serving sizes, preparation ideas and care and handling tips.
Surreal photographic Foodscapes by photographer Carl Warner. Strawberry hot air balloons, towers of cheese, potato boulders, green pea boats on seas of salmon, spice roads, and sugar beaches populate these intricate and luscious scenes. More dishy foodscapes (the plate rainbow = ♥!) and other wonderful visual tricks at his Flash site in the "Fotographics" section (look for the fabulous forest of boots and the white cotton winter wonderland!). [more inside]
One whose "putrid-smelling blossom attracts herds of carrion beetles" and seven more similar charmers. Some fearsome vegetables. A very lovely "previously." (From Taz, circa 2003.) Some plants that've been given new, animated features and a soundtrack. And finally, this: it has to be the most annoying website in history, but it presents some very nifty ideas for vegetable-based costuming you might be able to use for Halloween, plus Richard Simmons is featured. Click on "fashion" for the lettuce gowns, tomato hats and just all kinda fabulous Carmen Mirandesque madness.
The story of Oedipus, in 8 minutes, performed by vegetables. [NSFW, 50mb qt]
Taco Bell E. Coli Out break from... green onions? This is the second major outbreak of E. Coli from vegetables this year. Where does E. Coli come from? "One of the root words of the family's scientific name, "enteric", refers to the intestine, and is often used synonymously with 'fecal'."
Eat your vegetables, they are good for you. the goal ... it seemed so ambitious at the time! ... was to cook a vegetable, with new recipes and new vegetables, every single day for an entire month. (Why? Because our diets need more vegetables. Because vegetables are too often an after-thought. And because it's easy to get stuck in a veggie rut.) But after a month, it felt like I was just getting started ... and the asparagus was calling. And then ... 365 days of new vegetables and new recipes.
Seed Savers Exchange is a non-profit company that preserves and sells an amazing variety of heirloom seeds, including seeds for fractal-like romanesco broccoli, all-blue potatoes, near-black tomatoes, and what could well be the most garish veg ever. Nipple fruit, unfortunately, is solely ornamental.
Lifehacker is a fairly new addition to the Gawker Media family of blogs, publishers of another personal favorite in the Gizmodo gadget blog. Lifehacker posts articles on how to do all sorts of things better/quicker/cooler/cheaper:
- How to make a "life poster" with Photoshop
- how to opt out of credit card junk mail
- free Hubble Space Telescope wallpaper images
- get thumbnail screenshots with your google search results using firefox
- How to cut vegetables (previously posted here)
Tomatoes! They are delicious, or at least they used to be. First came ethylene ripening and monoculture which turned them into tasteless red baseballs, and taste was't the only problem. Then came this year's hurricanes which decimated the crops, driving prices up. And now, just when you think you've found a really tasty variant on the market with the wonderfully appropriate name of UglyRipe, the state growers board goes and bans them for being too ugly. If you agree that this sucks go and tell the guys in charge.
Man, that little red fruit sure does seem to cause a lot of trouble. Maybe we should try to smash them all.
Man, that little red fruit sure does seem to cause a lot of trouble. Maybe we should try to smash them all.
Watermelon carving - a gallery of intricate work and eclectic subjects. In Thailand, there is a tradition of elaborately carving fruit and vegetables, especially when preparing foods for royalty or as part of festivals such as Loi Krathong. This gallery offers some pictorial instructions; books, tools, and sample instructions are also available from the Temple of Thai.
Interesting info for even the ardent salad dodgers (via bifurcated rivets)
Fish & Veggie: Healthy Dietary Life In Japanese Style.
Animal, Vegetable, Video — vibrant vids of vitality.
Purple carrots are to be sold by a UK supermarket. But it's orange carrots that are the gimmick. Most wild carrots are purple or white. Orange carrots were created by patriotic 16th Century Dutch farmers from a mutant variety, to match their national colour.
Yams, yams, yams. Immortalized by Michelle Shocked's song about the Yamboree Queen. (Which I always thought was a joke, stupid me.) It turns out that most yams are really Sweet Potatoes although yam-sweetpotatoes are also different from regular sweet pototes. The confusion is much more widespread than my own Wabash Valley inflicted confusion between mangos and green bell peppers. Yam sweet-potatoes are a good source of fiber, beta carotene and vitamin C if prepared fresh. True Mexican wild yam was used as a raw material for birth control pills and is still claimed to useful for medicinal purposes.
It's national vegetarian week, apparently. After reading this article on chicken nuggets, I might be converting, not that I have ever eaten a chicken nugget, of course. It's not just junk food that leaves one feeling green about the gills though. I identified all of the vegetables in this quiz, I don't know that I would want to eat all of them though.
"We think of an orange as a constant, but in reality it's not." Canadian study finds that fruits and vegetables have lost much of their nutritional value in the last decades--potatoes, for example, have lost 100% of their Vitamin A. The reason, it appears, is mass production and a market that values appearance over substance. Is this symptomatic of deeper problems within a system where produce travels so far before reaching the consumer? Here in B.C., for example, the stores are full of California produce, despite the fact that we grow much the same fruits and vegetables locally.
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