Category Archives: Food

Inventing Bubble Gum

Gracen A. asks: What is original flavor bubblegum supposed to taste like? Bubblegum, the ambiguously flavoured, obnoxiously pink candy gum that is the favourite treat of Violet Beauregarde and, seemingly, a shocking amount of stock photo actors was first invented in 1928 by an accountant called Walter Diemer. Despite being asked in dozens of interviews throughout his life, Diemer took […]

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Who Invented the Bloody Mary Drink and Who is It Really Named After?

Saurabh A. asks: Is the bloody Mary drink really named after Queen Mary Tudor? For many, Sundays mean brunch and a delicious morning cocktail. Quite often, that early alcoholic beverage is the odd combination of tomato juice, celery, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce (see: The Stomach Turning Thing Worcestershire Sauce is Made Of), vodka and other spices that’s known as a […]

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Why Are You Not Supposed to Use Twice Boiled Water for Tea?

Jeremy W. asks: Is it true that drinking tea made from twice boiled water is bad for you? There’s a rather persistent idea that “reboiling” water (i.e. boiling water two or more times and allowing it to cool in-between) while making a cup of tea is potentially harmful to your health, with some going so far as stating that regularly […]

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That Time Coca-Cola Tried to Sell Bottled Tap Water in the U.K. and the Hilarity That Ensued

As literally one of the biggest companies on Earth, Coca-Cola has their giant fingers in a lot of equally giant pies. One of those fingers happens to be dipped in the extremely lucrative bottled water market. The product we’re talking about today is Dasani, which currently earns Coca-Cola just shy of one billion dollars per year in the United States, […]

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Why Does the Yolk of an Overcooked Hard-Boiled Egg Turn Green?

Laura K. asks: Why does the yolk of a hard-boiled egg sometimes turn green? The process of hard-boiling an egg involves denaturation. During this process, the amino acid chains found in the proteins in the egg are altered from their original, raw egg state, with the denaturation temperature varying somewhat depending on the specific protein in question (see chart here). […]

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Is it Safe to Eat Cheese Rinds?

Kerry S. asks: Are you supposed to eat the rind of cheese or just throw it out? Is it safe to eat? Does it depend on the type of cheese?  Thanks! Whether or not you should eat a cheese rind depends entirely on your taste, as even the most unpalatable rinds are in no way poisonous or dangerous to eat. […]

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The Difference Between “Regular”, Virgin and Extra Virgin Olive Oils

Karl W. asks: What’s the difference between regular olive oil and virgin? Generally speaking, olive oils fall into one of two broad categories: refined and unrefined, with virgin and extra virgin fitting in the latter category, and pure and light olive oils in the former. Olives used to make the two virgin, unrefined oils aren’t treated with heat or chemicals, […]

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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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Why is Cottage Cheese Called That?

Jan B. asks: Who invented cottage cheese and why did they call it that? The ancient Mesopotamians made a type of salty, sour cheese very similar to cottage cheese that dates back to at least 3000 B.C. A common legend is that it was invented when a desert traveler filled his sheep stomach saddle bags with milk prior to beginning […]

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