Forget Pies, Give A Sonker a Try This July 4th: The New York Times' Kim Severson recently went on a quest to Mount Airy, North Carolina in search of the sonker, a baked fruit dessert similar to a cobbler. While it’s somewhat unclear as to what the exact differences are between the two desserts, most of the residents of the small town are adamant that “a sonker is a sonker.”
Best New Pizza Places Around the Country: If you love pizza, you’ll love this list of the best new pizza joints around the country. Unless, of course, none of them are near you, in which case you might need to take a road trip to hit up the hot spots. If one is near you, bask in the glory of seeing a spot in your city or town make the list, and then go eat your heart out.
A Visit to the 2013 Fancy Foods Show: The Fancy Food Show in New York City is the biggest show of its kind, showcasing over 180,000 products (including confections, cheese, coffee, snacks, and spices) from vendors from around the world. Currently in its 59th year, the show is put on by the Specialty Food Association, a non-profit trade association of artisans, importers, and entrepreneurs. Forbes’ Larry Olmsted attended the show on Monday and reported back (hint: Looks Greek yogurt and olives will be around for a while longer).
Paper Shredders and Power Drills: The New Kitchen Appliances: Ever heard of a chef using a horse hair brush as fish descaler? Or a power drill as a tool to fashion handles on an ear of corn? We hadn’t either until we watched this video showing Chicago-area chefs using some strange items in their kitchens. Our favorite item might be the paper shredder that Brian Wright uses to turn tortillas into strips.
Green Tea May Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease: Green tea lovers, rejoice! Four new studies show that the drink can help protect you from developing Alzheimer’s disease. One of the flavanoids in green tea, called EGCG, seems to protect the brain from accumulating amyloid plaques, compounds that scientists believe cause the brain deterioration associated with Alzheimer’s Disease.
Yelp Creates Heat Map to Sort Reviews by Key Word: Yelp has put together maps of thirteen different American cities that describe areas based on the key words in restaurant reviews. For example, on the Boston version, the word hipster appears more in the Cambridge/Somerville area than it does around downtown Boston. Other key words include frat, tourist, hangover, noodles, and pricey. Take a look at your city (if it’s included) and find out what the areas you frequent say about you according to their reviews.
18 Food Challenges: Gotta Eat ‘Em All: Food challenges are nothing new; most ice cream stores have a “wall of fame” filled with photos of patrons who have eaten the shop’s most outrageously-sized servings. But BuzzFeed has put the standard wall of fame to shame by compiling a list of 18 of the most insane food challenges they could find. From the 105 pound burger (ten people are given 60 minutes to eat it, but no team ever has) to the “bacon bomb,” the restaurants that offer these aren’t messing around.
The King of Random Makes Self-Freezing Slushies: Grant Thompson, the self-proclaimed King of Random, has a YouTube channel on which he posts videos of his “mad science” experiments and “random weekend projects.” His self-freezing cola is pretty cool (as it were): Using just a freezer and a bottle of coke, Thompson turns a soda into a slushy in only three seconds.
True Life: I’m Addicted to Carbs?: According to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, it may be possible to be addicted to carbohydrates. The new research shows that even when people are unaware of what they’re eating, carbs can activate a part of the brain associated with pleasure, reward, and addiction. Some scientists remain skeptical about a few aspects of the study, but most agree that it adds valuable material to the growing body of literature suggesting that high-sugar foods can alter the brain.
Tasting the Best Bourbons in America: The Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, a weekend-long celebration of all things culinary, features tastings and interesting lectures by America’s top chefs, food writers, and industry experts. POPSUGAR Food’s Anna Monette Roberts attended a bourbon tasting at the Classic, and recounts her various tasting notes of each high-end bottle.
The Best Breakfasts in America According to Details Magazine: Breakfast is back, baby. What many Americans treat as a quick bite before they head out for the day is turning into the nation’s next gastronomic revolution. In the words of chef Rob Newton of Seersucker in Brooklyn, NY: “Chefs are taking this food and making it really sexy and with real integrity.” Details features a rundown of what they have deemed the nation’s hottest (or coolest, depending) first meals of the day.
The Detox Cleanse Trend: Is It All a Hoax?: “Cleansing,” a several-day diet of only liquids designed to cleanse the body of toxins, is sweeping the nation. Juice companies are popping up left and right, and celebrities are endorsing the practice wholeheartedly. But does it actually do anything? Some claim there’s little scientific evidence suggesting so, and contend that cleansing is merely a new word for “let me eat as little as I possibly can.”
Will Laser Tattoos Replace Sticky Fruit Labels?: Laser Food, a Spanish business, has teamed up with researchers from the University of Valencia to develop technology that can laser words onto fruit without damaging it. “The concept is the answer to a major problem in the industry: Total traceability of fruits and vegetables, by the piece, until they reach the consumer’s table” says Stephanie Merit, the export sales director of Laser Food. While the factor of traceability is great, we also just think fruit tattoos look pretty cool.
Junk Foods Banned in Schools Starting in 2014: Yesterday the government announced its “Smart Snacks in Schools" nutrition standards for "competitive foods," which is what they call food not offered at meal-times and sold in such places as vending machines and snack bars. High-fat chips, full-calories sodas, doughnuts, and candy bars have been banned and will be replaced with granola bars, peanuts, fruit cups, light popcorn, low-fat chips, and no-calorie flavored water.
How to Throw a Craft Beer Party for Non-Craft Beer Drinkers: The first step to throwing a craft beer party for people who don’t know much about the stuff is to make them care. Some ways to do this include telling anecdotes about the brewery where the drinks are produced or mentioning the different complex flavors and ingredients in each brew. You should also make it less intimidating and use beers people are familiar with as a basis of comparison. Here’s the full rundown of suggestions.