By the early twentieth century, Chinese food was well on its way to becoming the most popular ethnic food in America. The same adaptive strategies that allowed them to bypass the racist Chinese Exclusion Act and reinvent their cuisine for the American palate continued to serve Chinese restaurateurs well throughout the twentieth century. In this episode, Heather Lee introduces us to the "dine & dances" of the 1920s—exotic, late-night Chinese restaurants in New York City where young people could experiment with new gender roles. Outside the context of their own cultural expectations, women flirted and couples kissed in public, shocking the city's anti-vice inspectors.
Business Insider isn't the best source in the world, but if their report on Hampton Creek is true, a remarkable swindle of the tech elite has been pulled off.
Hampton Creek is working on cookie dough, pancake batter, and a complete egg replacement.
All these products use plants to replace the eggs. In the mayo products, it's a yellow-pea protein. In the cookies, it's sorghum.
The startup has raised more than $120 million, according to CrunchBase, including investments from Asia's richest man, Li Ka-shing. Bill Gates, an indirect investor, singled it out as a company shaping the future of food.
Hampton Creek's other investors are big names in Silicon Valley, too. Hampton Creek has investments from Yahoo founder Jerry Yang, Khosla Ventures, Founders Fund, Facebook cofounder Eduardo Saverin, and Salesforce CEO and founder Marc Benioff, to name a few.
From the outside, all looks well. But based on the accounts of some former employees, the reality at Hampton Creek is different.
Coville had been investigating the wild blueberries that grew near his family's vacation home in New Hampshire. He'd figured out, for instance, why wild blueberries usually didn't prosper when people tried to grow them at home, in gardens. Blueberries, he reported, need acidic soils — very different from most food crops.
The report suggested that farmers might be able to use this knowledge to grow blueberries as a crop. And it got Elizabeth White's attention. She sat down and wrote a letter to Coville's boss at the USDA. She made sure to keep a carbon copy of this letter; she kept it in a fireproof safe for years afterward.
Elizabeth White offered to pay the USDA to carry out additional blueberry experiments on her family's farm. She wrote that this land would be "admirably suited to blueberries, judging by the way the wild ones flourish" in the pine forests nearby. These were tall, "high-bush" blueberries.
Animal treatment has part of meat and dairy production is far from transparent. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in other conservative agricultural states. (via NPR)
Idaho's so-called "ag-gag" law, which outlawed undercover investigations of farming operations, is no more. A judge in the federal District Court for Idaho decided Monday that it was unconstitutional, citing First Amendment protections for free speech.
It may be that a sixth basic taste has joined sweet, sour, bitter, salty and umami - fat. The new taste is called oleogustus, although one suspects it may just be called fat as umami is often called savory.
Cordelia A. Running1, Bruce A. Craig2 and Richard D. Mattes3 1 Department of Food Science, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA, 2 Department of Statistics, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA, and 3 Department of Nutrition Science, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, USA
Considerable mechanistic data indicate there may be a sixth basic taste: fat. However, evidence demonstrating that the sensation of nonesterified fatty acids (NEFA, the proposed stimuli for “fat taste”) differs qualitatively from other tastes is lacking. Using perceptual mapping, we demonstrate that medium and long-chain NEFA have a taste sensation that is distinct from other basic tastes (sweet, sour, salty, and bitter). Although some overlap was observed between these NEFA and umami taste, this overlap is likely due to unfamiliarity with umami sensations rather than true similarity. Shorter chain fatty acids stimulate a sensation similar to sour, but as chain length increases this sensation changes. Fat taste oral signaling, and the different signals caused by different alkyl chain lengths, may hold implications for food product development, clinical practice, and public health policy.