Category Archives: Food

Is Honey Vegan?

Melissa asks: Is honey considered vegan? There’s a reason there’s the expression “busy as a bee.” These buzzing insects’ entire lives are dedicated to making sure the hive keeps humming and the next generation of bees are born. Worker bees are consistently building, cleaning and protecting their home. When they are not tending to the hive, they are foraging for […]

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Who Invented the Chocolate Easter Bunny?

Dhruv S. asks: Who invented the chocolate Easter bunny? The chocolate Easter Bunny seems to have been invented by people of German heritage, either in Germany or America, sometime around the 19th century. Many believe (although it’s certainly not settled) that the name Easter is derived from Germanic goddess of spring and fertility, Eostra. In support, they point to one […]

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The Uber Tuber

The following is an article from Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Oh, the poor potato—a symbol of laziness (couch potato) and unhealthy eating (cheese fries). But it deserves much better. Here’s how the lowly potato altered the course of human history. SPUDS OF THE INCAS For at least 4,000 years, potatoes have been cultivated in the Peruvian Andes. The Incas called […]

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Asparagus, Beets, Carrots and Your Urine

Stephanie I. asks: Why do beets turn some peoples pee red while others it doesn’t? Asparagus may be the most well-known urine changer, and even Ben Franklin acknowledged that just “a few stems of asparagus eaten, shall give our urine a disagreeable odor.” Although the precise mechanism is not definitively understood (despite extensive study), it is generally thought that a […]

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Why Do Americans Refrigerate Their Eggs and Most Other Countries Don’t?

Matt asks: Why do Americans refrigerate eggs and other countries don’t? How long do eggs last unrefrigerated? In supermarkets across the United States, Australia, and Japan, eggs can be found in the refrigerated section alongside other cold items such as milk and cheese. However, in most other countries of the world, eggs can be found stored at room temperature alongside nonperishable […]

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From Scouring Soap to Chewing Gum- William Wrigley Jr. and His Freebies

Most of us who have been chewing sticks of Spearmint or Juicy Fruit gum over the last several decades probably assume that the manufacture and sale of gum was what Wrigley was always about. After all, the company, which was founded by William Wrigley Jr., is famous for being the leading gum manufacturer globally, with an array of brands like […]

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A Cake or a Biscuit- The Lengthy and Expensive Saga of the Jaffa “Cake”

For anyone reading this who happens to be from the UK, you’re more than likely already well aware of what a Jaffa Cake is. For our readers that haven’t had the pleasure of sampling one of the greatest comfort foods ever created, they’re little, spongy, chocolate coated disks that contain a small amount of orange flavoured jam- they’re delicious. Oh, and […]

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How Did the Practice of Women Jumping Out of Giant Cakes Start?

Diane F. asks: Who started the tradition of girls jumping out of cakes? Almost everyone has seen depicted the bizarre bachelor party tradition of a scantily-clad woman jumping out of a giant cake. It turns up most often in decades-old films, TV shows, and comics, but it still persists today at lavish Vegas shindigs—though the cakes are now usually made […]

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Parsley and Your Breath

Pete M. asks: Why is a tiny bit of parsley included with certain meals? Is it true that it is there to cure bad breath? Does it really work? Thanks and keep up the great work! In an age where strong-flavored, nutritiously dense greens like kale dominate, quiet, mild parsley has, for many, been shunted to the side. This is […]

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The Truth About the Surprisingly Recent Invention of the Tea Bag, and the Women Who Really Invented It

Mark A. asks: Who invented tea bags? Legend says that brewing tea dates back to around 2737 BC, when tea leaves fell into water being boiled for Emperor Shennong of China. There does not appear to be any hard evidence of tea being discovered this way, but evidence we do have suggests that brewing tea did indeed likely start in […]

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