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Twisted by Jessica Zafra – Pumping irony since 1994
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Archive for the ‘Food’

The Wine Show: Getting to know the grape with Matthews Goode and Rhys

May 27, 2016 By: jessicazafra Category: Food, Television 2 Comments →

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THE WINE SHOW answers the age-old question: good looks or personality? Specifically, would you rather spend time with two very attractive men with average conversational skills, or two not as attractive men who can have a hilarious conversation about nothing? Even more specifically, would you rather drive through Italy in the company of Matthew Goode (Downton Abbey) and Matthew Rhys (The Americans), or with Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon (The Trip to Italy, reviewed here some months back)? I guess that would depend on whether you want to document your trip on Instagram, or make a TV show.

Read our TV column The Binge.

Is this poem racist, or is it mocking foodie culture?

April 10, 2016 By: jessicazafra Category: Books, Food No Comments →

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Chow mein photo from norecipes.com

Have They Run Out of Provinces Yet?
by Calvin Trillin

Have they run out of provinces yet?
If they haven’t, we’ve reason to fret.
Long ago, there was just Cantonese.
(Long ago, we were easy to please.)
But then food from Szechuan came our way,
Making Cantonese strictly passé.
Szechuanese was the song that we sung,
Though the ma po could burn through your tongue.
Then when Shanghainese got in the loop
We slurped dumplings whose insides were soup.
Then Hunan, the birth province of Mao,
Came along with its own style of chow.
So we thought we were finished, and then
A new province arrived: Fukien.
Then respect was a fraction of meagre
For those eaters who’d not eaten Uighur.
And then Xi’an from Shaanxi gained fame,
Plus some others—too many to name.

Now, as each brand-new province appears,
It brings tension, increasing our fears:
Could a place we extolled as a find
Be revealed as one province behind?
So we sometimes do miss, I confess,
Simple days of chow mein but no stress,
When we never were faced with the threat
Of more provinces we hadn’t met.
Is there one tucked away near Tibet?
Have they run out of provinces yet?

Calvin Trillin defends his poem.

Feline Food Critics: a food blog we can believe in

March 14, 2016 By: jessicazafra Category: Cats, Food No Comments →

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We don’t believe most food blogs because 80 percent of the time we disagree violently with their recommendations. Also, some of them sound like they just ate food for the first time. Too enthusiastic.

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We don’t believe Instagrams of food because they just mean “I’m having a fabulous meal and you’re not.”

But if cats do food reviews and hand out Meowchelin stars, we believe them. Cats do not lie. If they hate something, they hate it.

Japanese Couple Captures Every Moment Of Cat Bros Watching Them Eat

How taste works

December 01, 2015 By: jessicazafra Category: Food, Science No Comments →

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A flavor experience may begin with a past meal: The memory (1) activates dopamine reward centers, leading us to crave the flavors to come. We salivate.

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A brain primed for pleasure begins to receive sensory impulses from the food as we move it (2) to our mouth, see its colors and shapes (3) and inhale its aromas (4).

Read Beyond Taste Buds: The Science of Delicious

Brains! Yummy brains! Red velvet brain cake for Halloween

October 23, 2015 By: jessicazafra Category: Food No Comments →

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Here’s a treat for the zombies who knock on your door next week.

How to cake it. via 3QD.

It’s aliiive! Mmm, stinky cheese. Mmm, mold.

October 02, 2015 By: jessicazafra Category: Food No Comments →

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Some mold attacks milk and spoils it. Other mold helps make cheese, like Camembert, because it protects the cheese from contamination. Credit: Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times

The cheese they buy is alive with fungi; indeed, many cheeses require a particular species of mold to properly ripen. To produce Roquefort blue cheese, for example, cheese makers mix Penicillium roqueforti into fermenting curds. The mold spreads throughout the cheese, giving it not only a distinctive blue color but also its (acquired) taste.

To produce soft cheeses such as Camembert or Brie, on the other hand, cheese makers spray a different mold species, Penicillium camemberti, on the curds. The fungus spreads its tendrils over the developing cheese, eventually forming the rind. When you chew on a Camembert rind, you’re eating a solid mat of mold.

Read Carl Zimmer on Stinky Cheese.

Reminds us of the time the nuns at a Catholic school summoned our friends to school to reprimand them for giving their kid “rotten food”. Her recess time snack was Roquefort, crackers and grapes. Technically, the nuns were correct: cheeses contain mold and fungi. That’s why they’re so yummy.

At home, the cats keep trying to steal our Brie.