The Mysterious Origins of Sausage

What can you say about sausage? That it’s funny because of its phallic shape, that you can’t always know what’s in it (and that’s scary), and just about every culture around the world has it. Sausages vary from place to place, and in different eras, and the variety of force meat in casings means it can even be hard to define.  

The ubiquity of the food makes it hard to trace its first moments on Earth; sausages were a solution to a problem that every culture was likely to come up against. “Sausages were created originally for two reasons: One, to make use of every little piece of the meat, so nothing is wasted, and two, by using salt and smoking, it was a way to preserve it,” explains Gary Allen, author of Sausages: A Global History, pointing to the rise of coordinated hunting and the ability to pull down increasingly larger game as one of the conditions that led to the birth of sausages.

Read about the development of sausage and the many different sausages of the world at Atlas Obscura.

(Image credit: Flickr user oatsy40)


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Featured Designs from the NeatoShop:



Lovingly-Detailed Outlander Birthday Cake

Yan, from Geeks Are Sexy, wanted to surprise his wife for her birthday with a cake that spoke to her interests. She’s a big fan of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander book series, so she got this lovely custom cake made by Josianne St-Laurent from Simplement St-Laurent. It was part of a surprise party and Mrs. Yan was delighted! You can see more of the cake’s intricate details at Geeks Are Sexy.


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Japan's Ghostbusters-Inspired Marshmallow Burger

I ain't afraid of no giant marshmallow -especially if it's served toasted with cookies and raspberry sauce. This messy-but-lovely "burger" monstrosity is available at Japan's J.S. Burger Cafe and is part of their new Ghostbusters-inspired line of snacks. Other strange treats include a black-bunned burger topped with anchovy and olive paste, black chili chips and a green kiwi smoothie with an appearance that might make Slimer cringe.

Via Eater


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The Deep-Fried Burger

Considering how much we report on fair food, the title might make you think that this is an entire hamburger -bun and all- breaded and deep-fried on a stick as an extreme dish. No, this is a method for cooking your hamburger patties that’s been around for at least 100 years. You can do it at home to make the same kind of burgers your family expects. It began at Dyer’s in Memphis.

In my travels throughout the United States I have since discovered other deep-fried burger joints, stands, and carts, and they all share one very important component—rich hamburger history. The method for deep-frying burgers was actually born of laziness: an accident-turned-tradition. One day, in around 1912, Elmer Dyer was too busy to drain the skillet he was using to cook burgers. Eventually the rendered fat became a deep pool of grease. Elmer discovered that if he strained the grease and used it to cook with, the result was actually a better-tasting burger.

Now I know what you are thinking—“Yikes! I’m not eating a deep-fried burger!” But trust me, you should, and you will. The deep-fried burger cooks in just 1 minute and, if the temperature of the oil is just right, the patty deflects most of the oil. These factors allow the patty to retain a moist composition and lend it a slightly crispy exterior.

The method is not difficult, but may take a little practice. That means more cheeseburgers! The instructions are at Lucky Peach. -via Digg


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Sunburned Toast

Enjoy the summer sun, but be sure to put a lot of sunblock on! Don't let your skin get too toasted. Instagram member konel_bread, who previously showed us surprise bread loaves, offers this cheeky piece of toast.


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2,000-Year-Old Blob Of Butter Found In A Bog- And It's Still Edible

I feel weird eating butter that has been sitting in a dish on the table all day, so I can't even begin to imagine sampling a massive blob of butter that's been sitting in a bog for 2,000 years.

But the 22-pound orb of butter seen in the photo above is theoretically still edible thanks to the preservative effects of the bog, although the guy who found it in Co Meath, Ireland isn't ready to try it out.

The butter is thought to have been buried in Emblagh bog as an offering to the gods, and since the area is a "no-man's-land" it was left undisturbed for over two thousand years.

Now it's on display in the Cavan County Museum, where it will sit until somebody uncovers a 200-pound loaf of bog bread.

-Via Gizmodo


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Deep Fried Cheetos-Covered Macaroni and Cheese Sticks

(Photo: The Consumerist)

You wake up in the morning. The alarm clock has been buzzing for half an hour, but you still can't summon the will to turn it off, let alone get up.

Head on down to Burger King, the home of the Whopper and Mac n' Cheetos! When you've given up on, well, pretty much everything, then Burger King has the meal for you!

The Consumerist reports that the hamburger chain is preparing to release its newest simulated food product on June 27. Mac n' Cheetos consists of macaroni and cheese breaded with crumbled Cheetos, then deep fried. Each cartoon of 5 will cost $2.49.

-via First We Feast


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Galaxy Donuts

A photo posted by Hedi Gh (@h.rebel) on May 8, 2016 at 12:22am PDT

A good donut tastes like the beauty of the universe. Bite into these swirling galaxies of flavor by Instagram members Hedi Gh and Sam Melbourne. The two chefs ice their confections to look like the cosmos on a clear night. You can find instructions on how to make your own here.

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SPAM® Sushi and Other Minnesota State Fair Foods

The Minnesota State Fair will run August 25th through September 5th in St. Paul. In addition to the funnel cakes, gyros, and deep-fried candy bars on a stick, they have announced new culinary treats for this year. Topping the list is  SPAM® Sushi, described as “grilled SPAM®, sushi rice, fried egg, and wasabi rolled in nori (dried seaweed).” Nothing says “state fair” like SPAM® Sushi! Other new foods include Candied Bacon Donut Sliders, Cheesy French Onion Monkey Bread, Deep Fried Nachos Supreme, the Reuben Pickle Dog (which is not a hot dog at all, but a pickle and sauerkraut wrapped in a slice of corned beef), Paneer on a Spear, Macaroni & Cheese Curds, deep-fried SPAM® Curds, and more. Frankly, I covet the Strawberry Donut Delight, which is strawberry shortcake made with a glazed donut in place of cake. You can see the entire menu of new fair foods at the Minnesota State Fair website. -via Buzzfeed


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18th-Century Fried Chicken

This recipe for fried chicken was found in a 1736 cookbook called Dictionarium Domesticum by Nathan Bailey. It features a rather acidic marinade that ensures the finished chicken is tender and tasty. But probably different from what you’re used to.  

(YouTube link)

Hungry now? The video is from Jas. Townsend and Son, Inc., a business that sells living history products. Their YouTube channel has more on recreating 18th-century history in your spare time. -via reddit


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Restaurant Serves Noodles in Bowls of Ice


(Photo: ekwan2)

Rocket News 24 tells us about Tempura Matsu, a restaurant in Kyoto that merges traditional Japanese style and cuisine with radical innovation. For example, it serves udon noodles in slabs of ice with bowl-like concavities. The hot noodles cool in the ice, which adds to the broth as the ice melts. I want to try it!


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Surprise Bread Hides Pictures in Every Slice

Instagram member @konel_bread is a master baker with a flair for making surprise bread. That's a loaf of bread that has an image hidden inside. The picture appears with every slice.

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Making Mochi is Scary

(Video Link)

If you're familiar with even the most basic Japanese dessert, you're probably familiar with mochi, the sticky, sweet cakes made from rice flour. What you probably don't know is that the most traditional way to make mochi is also horrendously dangerous -one person whacks the paste with a mallet while another person folds and mixes it with their hands. It's easy to see what could go wrong here, but that's precisely what makes it so fascinating to see the fastest mochi maker in the world smash and fold in record time. Watching him makes me want to flinch and my hands are nowhere near a giant wooden mallet.

Via Eater 


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Star Wars Sushi

Food artist Okitsugu Kado creates Star Wars sculptures to add something special to his sushi platters. He’s been perfecting his technique for ten years now. They’re edible, made from cucumbers, carrots, sweet potatoes, and other vegetables, but who could bring themselves to eat them? See more pictures of Kado’s creations at Kotaku. You’ll even see spaceships of baked bread! -via Gamma Squad


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Girl Shares Pics Of Street Food From Around The World On Her Instagram Account

Rose Gelato, Paris

If you're gonna go around taking pictures of everything you eat so you can post the pics to social media sites you should take a note from Melissa Hie and use those pics as an excuse to travel around the world.

Hello Kitty Donut, Tokyo

Melissa posts pics of the delicious street food she discovers during her travels on her Girl Eat World Instragram account, where you can see everything from the amazing looking Hello Kitty donut from Japan to this plain but delicious puff she purchased in Myanmar.

Puff, Myanmar

As you can tell the food isn't the only reason people are oohing and aahing over Melissa's pics, and her drop dead delicious images should serve as an example of how to do social media food pics the right way.

Frozen Yogurt, Malta

See "Girl Eat World" Instagram Features The Tastiest Street Food From Around The World here


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Tacos Save Man's Life

We all know that tacos are delicious. Some people love tacos so much they'll commit crimes to get them, but up until now no one knew that tacos can actually save lives. In Mexico City though, police actually saved a suicidal man's life by promising to buy him tacos. Supposedly the man was lonely, drunk and depressed, but it sounds to me like he was pretty rational if he was able to recognize that tacos are worth living for.

Image via Marcos Metropolis


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Marie Antoinette Cotton Candy


(Photo: Alex Ika Iacovitti)

This is the Marie Antoinette. It's an enormous and ornate coiffure of cotton candy inspired by the hairstyles of Queen Marie Antoinette, who lost her head to a guillotine blade during the French Revolution. Now the Barton G. restaurant in Los Angeles serves it to you on a platter.


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Cactus Macaron

Ayako Kurokawa is a pastry chef and sculptor in New York City. At Pâtisserie Burrow, she offers cakes that blend the influences of French, Japanese, and American cuisine. I'm especially tickled by this macaron assembly that looks like a cactus.

-via Lustik


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Macaroni & Cheese Cocktails

Summer is here, so it's time for some fresh summer cocktails! For Andrew Ford of Above Average, that means mixing Kraft Macaroni & Cheese with liquor.

Try the Mac-Tini, which has vermouth, gin, and--you guessed it--macaroni and cheese. Or mix up a Mac-Mosa, which adds the entire cheese powder packet to champagne and watermelon. Then finish your breakfast with a cheesy margarita that has cheese powder accenting the glass lip. Yummy!

-via Marilyn Bellamy


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Donut Bouquet

(Photo: @lettucine)

Say it with flowers? No, if you love someone, express your passion with that eternal symbol of affection: the donut. The Doughnut Plant, a donut shop chain in New York City, offers elegant bouquets of donuts that are perfect for a tabletop display.

-via Thrillist


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The Weirdest Food Items You Can Buy on Amazon

They say that when you shop hungry, you're liable to buy all kinds of weird foods you would normally never eat. That must be the reason that most of these 24 strangest food items on Amazon even exist because otherwise I can't imagine a day where I'd want canned haggis, a dehydrated tarantula or bacon lube. But there are a few items on there that only make sense -like a whole bag of dehydrated cereal marshmallows like the ones you find in Lucky Charms. I think I could survive on those for at least a whole day.


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Donuts on Top of Donuts on Top of Other Donuts: Donutception

What's better than a dozen donuts? How about a donut with a dozen donnuts on it? It's a baker's dozen donuts all in one sweet treat. The brilliant "Inception Donut” was created at The Cinnamon Snail in NYC. It's particularly fitting that it's served in New York City because that means you can get a donut on top of a donut on top of another donut before getting a pizza on top of pizza served inside some pizza.

Via That's Nerdalicious


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Ranking the Best of McDonald's Around the World

April Siese traveled around the world, and like many long-term travelers, she began to look for anything familiar. That would be McDonald's, with its instantly-recognizable logo. But the food isn’t exactly like you’d get in the States. It’s just closer to home than the unfamiliar foods at other eateries where you don’t speak the language. Some of it was good and different, while some was awful and different. She wrote up unvarnished reviews of five of the best McDonald's offerings from the countries she’s visited, although the bad stuff about the top five gets mentioned as well. 


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Smash Your Burgers!

Chefs have been telling us for years that you shouldn’t smash your burger patties in the frying pan because you’ll squeeze all the juices out. So then why do the chains Shake Shack and Smashburger do just that? Because when you do it right, the results are delicious. J. Kenji López-Alt developed a technique called the Food Lab’s Ultra-Smashed Cheeseburgers that I’m going to try out.   

…as Kenji points out in his cookbook opus The Food Lab, if you smash your burger once, decisively, as soon as it hits the hot skillet—while the meat and fat are still cold—there won't be any juices (yet) to lose. You'll maximize the points of contact with the raging hot pan, which is effectively like singeing a layer of caramelization and Maillard reaction goodness onto every last bit of surface area, so it all sears into a salty, beefy crust.

It might take a bit of practice to get it exactly right, but the number of cheeseburgers I have to eat to get there is just the kind of sacrifice I’m willing to make. Check out the recipe at Food52. -via Digg

(Image credit: Mark Weinberg)


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Fruity Pebbles Ice Cream Sandwiches

(Photo: @taylormadefff___)

The Milk Bar in Fountain Valley, California is getting you ready for the day with a healthy breakfast cereal. It offers ice cream sandwiches with your choice of ice cream between two shingles made of Fruity Pebbles. If the shop serves coffee ice cream in these sandwiches, then you've got a meal on the go right here.

-via @donutscookiesandcream


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Delightful and Brilliant Food Inventions to Look Forward to

We love ice cream, but it melts to easily and it could look more impressive. Guest of a Guest has a great list of futuristic food creations and while they're all pretty impressive, the idea of ice cream that doesn't melt is all too exciting -and glow in the dark ice cream is simply a delightful idea. Then again, fat-burning pizza is pretty promising too.


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How to Make Oreo Cannolis

Chef Josh Elkin helpfully provides a step-by-step instructional video to show you how to make this Oreo that you'll definitely take instead of the gun. First, he separated the Oreo cookies from the creme. Then he powdered the chocolate cookies and added fluor, shortnening, and an egg to make a dough. After shaping the dough around cannoli tubes, he deep fried it to create the shells.

With sugar, vanilla extract, and water, Elkin formed a frosting, which he piped into the cannoli shells. Unless I missed a step, he didn't use the creme filling, so you have something extra to eat after you fix the cannolis. 

-via @mdoughw_eats


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Iron Throne Made of Chicken Wings

"Hunger is coming!" proclaims chef Josh Elkin. He made this replica of the Iron Throne from Game of Thrones. Like the one on the show, it's forged from the chicken wings that Aegon the Conqueror took from the lords of Westeros that he subdued.

Elkin clearly isn't just a chef. He's a veritable architect with food, as we've seen in the past with his breakfast Jenga tower and his Taj Mahal pizza. Let us hope that he someday builds the entire Red Keep out of pickled pigs' feet.


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How To Caramelize Sugar Without Melting It

Caramelizing sugar can be a real pain, and yet it's an integral skill for bakers and makers of all things sweet to learn if they want to add some nutty brown goodness to their culinary creation.

If you want to add caramelized sugar to your recipes but can't stand the process then you're about to become a fan of Stella Parks from Serious Eats, who figured out how to caramelize sugar by roasting it:

Consider the above photo exhibit A—neither brown sugar nor turbinado, but granulated white sugar that I caramelized without melting. It's dry to the touch, and performs exactly like granulated white sugar.

Except, you know, the part where it tastes like caramel.

That opens up a world of possibility, as it works flawlessly in recipes for buttercream, mousse, or cheesecake, which can accommodate only a small amount of caramel sauce before turning soupy or soft. It's also ideal for desserts that would be ruined by caramel syrup, which is by nature too hot for fragile angel food cake, and too viscous for soft candies like marshmallows or nougat. And, compared to caramel powder (made from liquid caramel, cooled and ground), it won't compact into a solid lump over time.

Read How To Make Caramel Without Melting Sugar here

-Via Boing Boing


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Reviews of Some of the World's Weirdest Beers

If you're into craft beers, then you know there are a lot of seriously weird beers out there. The thing is, some of those brews are actually amazing, while others are just plain nasty. Bon Appetit recently went ahead and taste tested some of the most bizarre brews on the market -from the one made with yeast out of the brewer's beard to the one made with a sheep dung-smoked whale testicle. They give you a good idea of which of these beers are actually good and which are just gimmicks -though each of these companies almost certainly has die-hard fans who will defend their brand until they die, so don't be surprised if you hear someone disagree entirely.


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