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Food myths that are useless/annoying, but are "common knowledge"

jameshig Aug 21, 2010 03:21 PM

Such as cooking something on high heat to "seal in the flavor/juices." This is just not the case. Anything else that makes you cringe when you hear it? How did this stuff become "common knowledge" and accepted as truth?

  1. m
    MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 02:45 PM

    I have a few more:
    -Food combining? Some people swear by it. I'm not sure there's any evidence that it matters all that much. Anyone know about this?
    -Alkaline diet. This, too, I'm not so sure about. These two diets seem a little complicated and annoying to me, no matter how good they might be for you.
    -Fasting. I never once felt good when I fasted, and I've experimented with a couple different methods. Again, some people swear by it. I always thought those people were maybe a bit austere and enjoy self-deprivation. My body rebels against it.

    3 Replies
    1. re: MichelleRenee
      hill food Mar 3, 2011 11:11 PM

      MR fasting can cause a slightly euphoric sensation in some extreme situations. you have to give it at least a few days (mine was involuntary - coming out of a bad near-death food poisoning, nothing sounded good, not even clear broth. lasted about a week, boy was I loopy - but that might be a different kind of fast, not certain foods at certain times, instead just starvation)

      1. re: hill food
        MichelleRenee Mar 9, 2011 10:36 AM

        Drugs, brain chemistry, loss of oxygen--those things can cause a euphoric sensation, as well. So does exercise... I think I'll go with the latter and make sure I eat an adequate amount of healthy foods every day. Seems to be, overall, much better for one's health than not eating for days on end. To each their own! Fasting is not for me.

        1. re: MichelleRenee
          hill food Mar 9, 2011 09:27 PM

          yes, given a choice, I'll take your method. was just pointing out there are many paths. yikes thinking about that.

    2. p
      phantomdoc Mar 2, 2011 01:58 PM

      Do not go swimming until an hour after eating is wrong.

      Never combine cheese with fish is wrong.

      1. m
        MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 01:56 PM

        Here's another one: that bottled water is better for you than tap-water. Might be the case in some circumstances, but as a general rule, this one goes in the myth pile.

        1. FrancoD Mar 2, 2011 12:27 PM

          Yogurt is the perfect diet food... not the case... :) its actually pretty fatty!

          2 Replies
          1. re: FrancoD
            goodhealthgourmet Mar 2, 2011 04:46 PM

            there's plenty of excellent fat free and low fat yogurt out there.

            1. re: goodhealthgourmet
              NicoleFriedman Mar 3, 2011 02:41 AM

              Absolutely. The diet trap (I think) is the high levels of sugar in some of the brands (especially Dannon's low fat). Personally I prefer Fage plain greek yogurt which I mix into fruit and splenda. Years ago I was an idiot; I ate Dannon light believing that was what yogurt tasted like. Now that's deprivation. It's watery with a strange aftertaste. I can't eat that stuff anymore.

          2. h
            Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 10:30 PM

            My MIL swears that if you eat bananas on an empty stomach, you're courting a heart attack.

            1. almansa Sep 16, 2010 05:56 PM

              I think I've perused this thread enough that I'm not repeating someone's contribution: the notion that one should season (salt) meat after cooking rather than before. Not only is the supposed science behind this reasoning absurd - that the salt will draw out much desirable moisture - but it is one sure way to go about preparing a never-better-than-average steak. I think most people will agree that a steak tastes better on the outside than on the inside. Most people are familiar at this point with the maillard reaction - the browning, as it were - and the more proteins one can draw to the surface are of the steak, the better the reaction. Salt accomplishes this like nothing else can.

              22 Replies
              1. re: almansa
                foreverhungry Sep 16, 2010 06:33 PM

                "I think most people will agree that a steak tastes better on the outside than on the inside."

                I won't agree with that statement. A high quality steak - and in my opinion that means a high quality grass fed ribeye - should have an outstanding beefy steak. The entirety of steak flavor should not be based on the Maillard reaction. Steak should have an inherent beefy and complex flavor.

                I also question the assertion that salt can draw more proteins to the surface. How exactly, does salt draw proteins to the surface? The proteins are in place. The only thing possibly being drawn to the surface is moisture. And even that, with salting a steak before cooking, I believe is minimal, unless your making a salt crust.

                The key to preparing a better-than-average steak is starting with the correct better-than-average chunk of meat. Past that, one only needs the proper heat and cooking method. Salt can enhance, yes, but not necessary for an excellent steak.

                1. re: foreverhungry
                  nkeane Sep 16, 2010 08:24 PM

                  the moisture that is drawn to the surface is protein laden. Not all proteins are bound as you say.

                  salt before grilling, but only 10-15min before.

                  1. re: nkeane
                    Soop Sep 17, 2010 02:51 AM

                    And add some rosemary :)

                    1. re: nkeane
                      foreverhungry Sep 17, 2010 06:34 AM

                      Not to be argumentative, but the logic just doesn't hold water (sorry for the pun). For 2 reasons:

                      1)Is there some protein associated with moisture drawn out by salt? Sure. A minuscule amount - especially given that you are talking about salting for 10 - 15 minutes. But given that the entire exterior surface of a steak is protein and moisture, saying that the amount of protein drawn out enhances the Maillard reaction is like saying that pouring a glass of water into Lake Superior affects its volume. It does not in any meaningful way.

                      2) To properly crust a steak and obtain the Maillard reaction, you need to start with a dry steak surface - any moisture on the steak surface, especially if cooking the steak in a hot pan, will steam the surface rather than properly sear it. To do that, you blot the surface of the steak immediately before cooking - I think most folks would agree that's standard practice. If you blot the steak, and there are unbound proteins drawn out by moisture, wouldn't they just get blotted away and end up int he paper towel?

                      1. re: foreverhungry
                        Soop Sep 17, 2010 07:09 AM

                        Really? I always pan-fry with the meat having been marinaded in olive oil. Have you got any links with info on crusting a steak? It's never occurred to me.

                        1. re: Soop
                          foreverhungry Sep 17, 2010 07:38 AM

                          Interesting. The thing with olive oil is that it has a relatively low smoke point - high 300's for your run-of-the-mill, not-small-batch-high-quality-extra-virgin, which I assume you'd use something that's super-expensive to pan-fry steaks. Canola, corn, and peanut go into the low to mid 400's. So unless you're pan-frying over medium heat rather than high heat, you might be hitting olive oil's smoking point.

                          In theory (well, and practice), you don't need any oil or butter to pan-fry a steak. Heat an all-clad or cast iron skillet over high heat until it's super hot, salt and pepper a steak, plop it in, and don't touch it for a couple of minutes, until the sides start to brown. Try to move it before that, and it'll stick. Wait the proper time, and you'll have a Maillard / caramelized exterior that's not sticking. After that, some folks flip and finish, or some flip and stick the pan in the oven at 400 to finish. Either way works.

                          But in any case, you shouldn't *need* olive oil or anything else on the surface if you have a high quality piece of meat. To me, marinades don't do a whole lot except mask the flavor of the meat. Sometimes, that's ok, when the meat is going into a dish that has a lot going on, like tacos. But when it's just slab-o-meat, I prefer to taste the meat, and not anything else.

                          I don't have any links, and at the end of the day, whatever works best for you, well, works best for you. Try experimenting with different techniques - that's what I've done to find the results that work best for my taste buds, and that might not work best for everyone else's.

                          1. re: foreverhungry
                            Soop Sep 17, 2010 08:00 AM

                            I used to grill (broil) them, and now I barbeque them or pan fry in a dry LC frying pan.

                            Of course it depends on the steak; sometimes you can finish them under the grill if they're thick enough. But going back to the mailard reaction, the steak doesn't stick to the pan, but I can get the caramelisation in parts without overcooking the steak, even thin ones. But it's not a crust in a sense of some char-grilled steaks I've had out, that have almost a crisp shell.

                            You're right of course, I can cook steaks "perfectly" because they end up exactly how I like them, as can you :)

                        2. re: foreverhungry
                          chefathome Jan 5, 2011 02:51 PM

                          +1 - SO TRUE. Same goes for browning meat for any reason, even before using in stews, etc. MUST BE DRY for Maillard.

                        3. re: nkeane
                          Chemicalkinetics Sep 17, 2010 07:27 AM


                          Not sure what salt does, it seems to enhance the cooking. However, I don't know if salt specifically draws proteins to the surface. If anything, salt draws water out to the surface because it absorbs water. Of course, then the salt can lyse the cells and cause the water to flow back.

                        4. re: foreverhungry
                          FoodFuser Sep 17, 2010 05:41 AM

                          The chef who shared the secret of soaking his strip steaks in oil, rosemary, garlic, and peppercorns for five days got my attention, and my thanks.

                          At such high prices, why not get that puppy up to the best it can be? Ribeye replaces strip but rosemary garlic and peppercorn and oil still mingle and marry in the ziploc bag with the pre-pierced piece of meat. The results are outstanding.

                          The steaks are lovingly massaged in the ziploc each morning and eve. This event builds as continuing rumbling foreplay throughout the full five days, until finally consummated with the fire from charcoal.

                          While I do not sense the imminence of the "Apocalypse, Now", then, or forever, I must say that "I love the smell of marinating steaks in the morning." And as Robert Duvall could've' uttered in the movie: "Charlie don't grill."

                          1. re: FoodFuser
                            foreverhungry Sep 17, 2010 06:43 AM

                            I've been on a bit of meat kick lately, so forgive what might seem as proselytizing. But I really don't understand why folks would want to marinade, sauce, spice, etc. a piece of meat if what they want to do is eat a high quality piece of meat. To me, the strength and amount of sauce increases as the quality of the meat decreases (or quality of any main ingredient). Fresh wild caught salmon? Plain, please, perhaps with some high quality finishing salt sprinkled on top. Fresh homemade pasta? Olive oil, S&P, and some fresh Parmesan. An excellent grass-fed ribeye? Dusting of salt after cooking. If it's the star of the dish, why add other flavors that bury it? I completely understand adding flavors that compliment, and I'm not saying everything needs to be eaten naked. But given the extreme rarity of eating a steak whose quality makes you think you've reached nirvana, then wouldn't one want to taste only the nuances and complexities of that chunk o meat? Much like one won't mix a fine scotch with ginger ale, I don't get why folks want to mix an excellent steak with extremely assertive flavors like rosemary, garlic, and peppercorns. To me, the only reason is that the steak itself is a flavorless grain fed commodity steak that we're all used to eating. In which case, the oil-rosemary-garlic-peppercorns becomes a fancy A-1.

                            1. re: foreverhungry
                              Soop Sep 17, 2010 07:07 AM

                              Firstly @ Food Fuser, I was gonna say I marinade my steaks for as long as possible in oil, salt (and herbs if using), but I didn't want to say anything (not that I would change my mind, as I love the result). I recently marinaded some chicken breasts with lemon and thyme ready for the BBQ. Obv you can't marinade in an acid for too long, but if I had more time, I'd like to get the herb to infuse more. To this end, I've made up a batch of rosemary and thyme olive oils.

                              @ ForeverHungry, I used to feel the same. I love steak (new years resolution some years ago was simply "eat more steak") I still feel strongly about overpowering sauces like peppercorn steak, which IMO has no place on a quality steak.
                              However with regard to the herbies (thyme and rosemary are great because the beef can really handle the strong flavour), they're more subtle.

                              As much as I like pure steak, sometimes you want coffee, sometimes you want tea :)

                              1. re: Soop
                                foreverhungry Sep 17, 2010 07:45 AM

                                I agree with you completely. My only point is, if I'm grilling (or pan-frying) a supermarket steak, or a steak from a butcher that I know isn't going to be excellent, then I'll be more likely to use herbs or rubs. I have nothing against that, and do it often. But on the occasions that I find a really high quality grass-fed steak, I go with the simplest preparation possible.

                                To use your chicken breasts as an example - if cooking the industrial-raised, commodity, bland, and steroid-plumped chicken breasts you get in a supermarket or standard butcher, then I'll rub or herb the heck out of it. There, the chicken breast is really more of a protein source and vehicle for flavor. But on occasion, I get a free-ranged chickens from small local farmers. Those chickens I tend to cook as simply as possible, because I want the pure chicken taste. Nothing wrong with either approach - it just depends on what you have available.

                                1. re: foreverhungry
                                  Soop Sep 17, 2010 08:06 AM

                                  Pretty much all the beef over here in England is grass-fed, so I guess I'm kind of spoiled for good beef.

                                  As for the chicken, while I do agree... Well, it was my girlfriends request firstly, but secondly, it was a really really good free range devonshire red which I jointed, and the legs went into a cassoulet the next day. But even with the lemon, you really notice the difference in flavour from the packs of pre-packaged sections. Whenever possible, I'm going to do the same thing in the future - I even think something like that would have an impact in something like a curry, the distance is so great.

                                  And you get free stock from the carcass :)

                                  1. re: Soop
                                    foreverhungry Sep 17, 2010 08:18 AM

                                    Buying good quality chickens, and then using the carcass to make stock, was something I started doing a few years ago. Especially with the fall and winter approaching, I'll have several gallons of stock in the freezer (just bought a chest freezer, will have it on Sunday), and difference when making risotto and soups is profound. I've even make "specialty" chicken stocks, like one from a smoked/grilled chicken. The stock had a very smoky taste to it, which worked great in soups like a corn chowder, and Mexican-flavor based stews.

                                    But on point - I've been reading about Highland beef, and have been wanting to get my hands on a Highland ribeye. I've heard it's one of the best steaks one can eat. I haven't had much luck finding one yet in the states. Have you much experience with Highland beef?

                                    1. re: foreverhungry
                                      Soop Sep 17, 2010 08:43 AM

                                      Aberdeen Angus is probably the most famed of these,so you might have more luck searching for that. It's been a while since I ate one, but TBH, I don't think there's really much difference in high-quality steaks around the UK these days.

                                      I'm racking my brain, but I'm not really sure if there's anything I can offer to help. If you ever plan a holiday over here though, let me know and I'll be more use!

                                      Good to hear an American that likes the taste of grass-fed though!

                                      1. re: Soop
                                        foreverhungry Sep 17, 2010 09:41 AM

                                        Angus is an interesting topic - and one that's ideal for this "myth" thread. I've read that in Britain, a steak can be labeled as "Angus" if it's at least 50% Angus.

                                        I've read from a reputable source that in the US, a steak can be labeled "Angus" if it comes from a black cow. Yes, you read that right. The reasoning (from what I read) was that Angus cattle tend to be black. Huh. Nevermind that there are some purebred Angus that are brown (dun?) because of a recessive gene, or that there are several other cattle breeds that are black.

                                        If true, that might explain why people in the US pay top dollar for Angus beef, yet the steaks can be terrible.

                                        If someone knows for a fact this isn't true, please post up. As hard as it is to believe, it wouldn't surprise me that the Dept of Ag would have such a nonsensical regulation.

                                        Soop - my quest is for Highland beef. Once I can assess its deliciousness, I'll let you know...

                                  2. re: foreverhungry
                                    Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 10:29 PM

                                    Chickens in the US are not treated with steroids or hormones.

                                    Yet another myth.

                                    1. re: Henny Penny
                                      almansa Mar 2, 2011 01:34 PM

                                      Nope, but they're blanket fed antibiotics and chilled in a cesspool.

                            2. re: foreverhungry
                              almansa Sep 18, 2010 07:22 PM

                              While I'd love to steak-off, I can accept that you're simply not part of the most. But as someone else mentioned, there are plenty of peptide chains just waiting to show themselves off if you give them a chance. Foreverhungry - do you like steak tartare without any dressing? That would be steak with an inherent beefy flavor.

                              1. re: almansa
                                foreverhungry Sep 18, 2010 08:12 PM

                                I've never had steak tartare with dressing. My mom made it on a regular basis, using a couple of eggs, parsley, some Worcestershire I think, and S&P. Nothing else I think. I loved it, but haven't had it in a few years. I agree that that is a way to get big beefy flavor. Now I think I'm going to have to put it on my menu within the next few weeks...

                            3. re: almansa
                              John E. Jan 14, 2011 06:28 PM

                              "I think most people will agree that a steak tastes better on the outside than on the inside."

                              I agree 100%. I realize your post is several months old, but I recently found your premise to be true. We had steaks the other night and since the temperature outside was in the single digits, we ate them inside. I would have to say that the steaks we ate last summer outside on the backyard deck were much better.

                            4. f
                              foreverhungry Sep 15, 2010 06:08 AM

                              Apologies if this one was already posted:

                              When making coffee, use cold water because it's more oxygenated.

                              What difference does it make, since you're going to heat the water anyway, and it's going to given up O2. Starting with cold, warm, or hot shouldn't matter, oxygen wise.

                              (though it might depending on what's going on in your water heater....)

                              9 Replies
                              1. re: foreverhungry
                                Soop Sep 15, 2010 09:26 AM

                                Are you sure about this one? I always thought this made sense, as when I used to drink instant coffee, the second coffee in quick sucsession would taste terrible.

                                At the time, I thought it was down to the granules disolving in the last of the old coffee, but then the oxidation thing made more sense. Could have been something completely different though.

                                Anyway, the science seemed to make sense.

                                1. re: Soop
                                  foreverhungry Sep 15, 2010 09:57 AM

                                  The oxygenation argument, though, doesn't make sense. Water holds specific amounts of dissolved O2 at given water temperature - and colder water holds more dissolved O2 than warmer water. If you cool water, it holds more dissolved O2 from the atmosphere. As you heat it, it loses that O2. So it doesn't matter if you start with cold or hot water. Once you heat it to a given temperature, it will hold a known amount of O2, which is less than cold water would hold. So the starting temp doesn't matter - only what the final temperature is.

                                  On a slightly different, yet related note, I'm not even sure what the level of oxygenation of the water would mean for the quality of a brewed cup of coffee, unless one argues that the dissolved O2 in the water interacts with compounds in the ground coffee to affect flavor. Given that there's plenty of O2 in the atmosphere surrounding the coffee grounds during the brewing process, I don't see how dissolved O2 specifically would affect brewed coffee.

                                  However, I could see how hot water from your old water heater, that has a bunch of sediment in it, would affect brewed coffee.

                                  1. re: foreverhungry
                                    Ruth Lafler Sep 15, 2010 03:20 PM

                                    Ah, the sediment in the water heater myth! Yes, there is sediment in water heaters. Since matter cannot be in two places at the same time, the fact that the sediment is in your water heater means that it cannot be in the water coming out of the water heater! And where did the sediment in the water heater come from? It came from the cold water coming into the water heater. Therefore, the fact that there is sediment in the water heater proves that there is *less* sediment in water from the water heater than there is in water from the cold tap. Water out = water in - sediment.

                                    The reason people (even plumbers) believe that there's more sediment in hot water is that they can see the sediment that collects in the water heater over time, while of course you can't see it in the water that flows out of the tap.

                                    1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                      foreverhungry Sep 16, 2010 06:19 AM

                                      Not quite. Fill my bathtub with cold water. Fill my bathtub with hot water. The water looks different. Cold = clear, hot = slight reddish brown.

                                      The sediment doesn't come only from the cold water coming into the heater, it comes from the interior of the heater - ever seen one after 10 years of use? Sediment accumulates in the water heater, and then after many years of use, sediment starts coming out of the water heater. Not in big chunks, mind you, but enough to discolor the water, and enough to taste. At least in the older Twin Cities houses I've lived in. I can see mine coming out the tap.

                                      Sorry, no myth there. Now, whether it actually affects coffee quality, that's a different question.

                                    2. re: foreverhungry
                                      Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 10:23 PM

                                      Depending on what your pipes are made o and the mineral content of your water (which can be very corrosive), it might not be a bright idea to eat/drink hot water from the tap, as minerals like lead and copper will be leached from the pipes at much greater rates when using hot water.

                                      1. re: Henny Penny
                                        MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 01:50 PM

                                        That's what I read, too. I only use cold water and heat it up if I want it hot.

                                    3. re: Soop
                                      Shazam Sep 15, 2010 03:23 PM

                                      I always thought it was due to off-flavours that could be picked up by the hot water (old pipes, whatever). Depends on how good your plumbing is, I suppose.

                                      1. re: Shazam
                                        Soop Sep 16, 2010 04:40 AM

                                        This sounds like the (true) warning about legionaires disease in water storage tanks in old buildings.

                                        1. re: Soop
                                          Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 10:26 PM

                                          Not old buildings. Legionaire's disease is a risk when the water heater is kept too cold. Age (and therefore potential contamination) add to the problems, but the kicker is when the water heater is below 140F.

                                          If you have kids, though, the risk of Legionnaire's is fractional compared to the risk of serious burns with hot water. Still, with my new indirect hot water tank, I'm having a Hoby mixing valve installed so that the water in the take is 140F and the water at the tap will be 105F.

                                  2. i
                                    Isolda Sep 13, 2010 07:01 PM

                                    Didn't see this one: You have to scald the milk before using it in a yeast dough. I did this for years before I realized that the recipes I was using were probably written before pasteurized milk came into widespread use. The bacteria in the milk would have been more likely to kill the yeast. I wasted a lot of time waiting for that scalded milk to cool enough to mix with the yeast.

                                    And I don't want to start a debate, but when did carbs (and gluten) become evil? I can understand if someone has a wheat allergy or celiac disease, but for the rest of us, what's wrong with a plate of pasta?

                                    10 Replies
                                    1. re: Isolda
                                      John E. Sep 13, 2010 08:44 PM

                                      I'm not much of a baker, but I don't think the milk scalding is actually to kill bacteria anymore but it is needed to change the protein structure of the milk so the bread isn't so dense. My mother used to say it helped lighten the loaf.

                                      1. re: John E.
                                        FoodFuser Sep 14, 2010 04:36 AM

                                        Same thing with making yogurt: bringing milk proteins to above 180 F helps the yogurt set thicker. The microwave makes that easier with no scalded proteins at the bottom of the pan that was in contact with the eye of the stove.

                                      2. re: Isolda
                                        Soop Sep 15, 2010 03:51 AM

                                        Yeah I don't know either.

                                        I think people just love going to extremes: If too much carb/gluten is bad for you then NO carbs/gluten is good for you. I'd imagine that there's little difference between the health benefits of "moderate" and "none"

                                        1. re: Soop
                                          MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 01:05 PM

                                          I think the idea that gluten is bad for you doesn't just come from the allergies, celiac disease and other afflictions that are exacerbated by wheat and/or gluten, but from the evidence that these afflictions are much more common than once thought, or maybe than they used to be, and that they're also tricky to diagnose. I try not to eat too much processes wheat or gluten simply out of a fear of those illnesses, and the fact that I feel a whole lot better eating bread or pasta made from sprouted grains.... I think gluten is just one of those things that a lot of people might tell themselves "better be safe than sorry."

                                        2. re: Isolda
                                          Basiorana Jan 5, 2011 02:50 PM

                                          A couple of quack doctors figured out they could bilk parents out of a lot of money by claiming autism was exacerbated by gluten, and sell diet books and gluten-free food products. Completely bogus, of course, there is no link. But any kid will seem different if you radically change his diet... Anyway, I think that was turned into "gluten is bad for the brain!" somehow.

                                          Carbs was Atkins. I HATE Atkins!

                                          1. re: Basiorana
                                            hill food Jan 5, 2011 08:25 PM

                                            Basio,you should look around for Margaret Cho's comedic account of being on Atkins.

                                            foul, unappetizing and hilarious.

                                            1. re: hill food
                                              goodhealthgourmet Jan 31, 2011 06:25 PM

                                              foul, unappetizing and hilarious.
                                              an apt description for most of her comedy :)

                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                onceadaylily Jan 31, 2011 07:01 PM


                                            2. re: Basiorana
                                              NicoleFriedman Mar 3, 2011 02:44 AM

                                              Don't dismiss this so easily. God forbid you have a child with autism and you will try anything. I agree that until several studies show consistently that this works, that the link may be minimal to nonexistant. (Just like the link between autism and vaccinations) However, everyone's bodies are different and the fact is we don't fully know what causes autism. A parent knows their child. If a GF diet helps, you can't say it doesn't.

                                              1. re: NicoleFriedman
                                                goodhealthgourmet Mar 3, 2011 08:40 PM

                                                thank you, Nicole. i've witnessed the benefits of a GF/CF diet in numerous kids on the spectrum, and in some of them the improvement is truly remarkable. i've had parents hug me while crying tears of joy after i worked with them to make the transition. that's NOT to say *every* child will benefit, but there's absolutely no denying the successes i've seen. i wish someone would do formal empirical studies, because right now the anecdotal evidence obviously isn't sufficient to prevent people from dismissing it as a "myth."

                                          2. porker Sep 13, 2010 02:32 PM

                                            Cavemen ate dinosaur eggs.
                                            They were 65 million years apart...

                                            1. GraydonCarter Sep 13, 2010 11:42 AM

                                              The fastest way to thaw a turkey (or duck) is by soaking it in a water bath. Myth.

                                              Alton Brown demonstrated that barely running cold water over it works best::

                                              See "Convection"

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: GraydonCarter
                                                John E. Sep 13, 2010 12:47 PM

                                                I never really thought of the water bath idea as the fastest, just the easiest way to thaw out a bird faster than just leaving it in the refrigerator.

                                                1. re: GraydonCarter
                                                  thew Sep 13, 2010 01:07 PM

                                                  barely running water IN a water bath

                                                  1. re: thew
                                                    Dave5440 Mar 2, 2011 07:05 PM

                                                    My tap water is 38 F right now, it would take a long time to thaw a turkey right now,

                                                2. b
                                                  bkalafut Sep 13, 2010 03:43 AM

                                                  Two related myths:
                                                  Margarine is healthier than butter.
                                                  Butter is healthier than lard.

                                                  Both claims are known to science to be false. Yet many who eat butter or (worse still) margarine are afraid of lard rendered from pork.

                                                  31 Replies
                                                  1. re: bkalafut
                                                    John E. Sep 13, 2010 10:30 AM

                                                    Isn't it common knowedge now that marjarine is more unhealthful for people than is butter?

                                                    I think it will be a long time before most people believe that lard is less healthful than butter.

                                                    1. re: John E.
                                                      bkalafut Sep 13, 2010 11:01 AM

                                                      "I think it will be a long time before most people believe that lard is less healthful than butter."

                                                      Attitudes near you must be very different than attitudes near me.

                                                      1. re: bkalafut
                                                        John E. Sep 13, 2010 12:46 PM

                                                        I don't know if they are or not, but the word 'lard' seems to be loaded with negatives and 'butter' is not.

                                                        1. re: John E.
                                                          Rasam Sep 14, 2010 04:40 AM

                                                          This is not from a health perspective, but as a (dairy and egg consuming) vegetarian, butter is acceptable to me, but lard is not.

                                                          Lard is taken from a dead animal, butter is not. So the idea of lard is much more negative for me, compared to butter.

                                                          1. re: Rasam
                                                            John E. Sep 14, 2010 09:56 AM

                                                            Yeah, that does make a lot of sense. I would have to agree that pork fat is probably at the top of the 'do not eat' list for a vegetarian, even one that eats dairy and eggs.

                                                            I guess it's true that lard has less impact on cholesterol than does butter, but I'm still not spreading it on my toast pancakes (even if I hardly ever eat pancakes).

                                                            1. re: John E.
                                                              Indirect Heat Sep 14, 2010 11:12 AM

                                                              If I were a vegetarian, I would make an exception for pork fat. Mmmmmm.... pork fat...

                                                              1. re: John E.
                                                                Rasam Sep 14, 2010 11:38 AM

                                                                John E:
                                                                The vegetarian "will not eat" list isn't ranked in that way - it's all equal - if it was once a living animal, do not eat (whether it's lard, chicken, offal, prime whatever, etc.) no matter how gross / tasty / healthy / whatever.

                                                                There's all the bazillion other tasty / healthy / gross / whatever plant based foods to eat.

                                                                Indirect heat:
                                                                if you made an exception for pork fat, you wouldn't be a vegetarian, so your point is what?
                                                                (another food myth: that vegetarians are swayed, other than to laugh, by Simpsons quotes).

                                                                1. re: Rasam
                                                                  John E. Sep 14, 2010 12:21 PM

                                                                  I guess it makes sense that all animals are treated the same because if they were not, it really wouldn't make sense.

                                                                  I used to work with a woman that said she wouldn't eat pork. She wasn't Jewish or Muslim, more like an Evangelical Christian, but somehow her church apparently mentioned that pork was 'dirty' (Old Testament) so her family didn't eat pork...except for ham. She also ate pepperoni pizza. Go figure.

                                                                  I have never watched the Simpsons, so I missed the point on that one, but that's ok.

                                                                  1. re: John E.
                                                                    thew Sep 14, 2010 12:23 PM

                                                                    probably 7th day adventists

                                                                    1. re: thew
                                                                      John E. Sep 14, 2010 05:39 PM

                                                                      Not even close. I know where she went to college and it certainly wasn't that.

                                                                    2. re: John E.
                                                                      porker Sep 14, 2010 02:42 PM

                                                                      "...if a pig had a better personality, he would cease to be a filthy animal. Is that true?" Vincent in Pulp Fiction after Jules comments,
                                                                      "Pigs are filthy animals. I don't eat filthy animals"

                                                                      Pork always getting a bad rep...{;/)

                                                                      1. re: porker
                                                                        John E. Sep 14, 2010 05:40 PM

                                                                        Yeah, I agree. We had pork steak tonight. Last night we had cassoulet that included pig's feet.

                                                                      2. re: John E.
                                                                        The Professor Sep 14, 2010 09:43 PM

                                                                        She ate ham?
                                                                        Then no matter how she tries to spin it, she eats pork.

                                                                        That's reminds me of "vegetarians" that eat fish or chicken (unless those animal products have been reclassified as vegetables while I was out of town).

                                                                2. re: John E.
                                                                  FoodFuser Sep 14, 2010 11:05 PM

                                                                  I can see the glee over ghee, for the humane reasons.

                                                                  But are there ways to love the lard, that comes from hand-petted pigs kept as pets? They were friends, and then they rendered their meat and their fats.

                                                                  1. re: FoodFuser
                                                                    Rasam Sep 16, 2010 07:18 AM

                                                                    "They were friends, and then they rendered their meat and their fats."

                                                                    Gollee FF, that's a view worthy of famous Dr. Lechter :)

                                                                    Do you "have" friends for dinner ;)

                                                                    1. re: Rasam
                                                                      FoodFuser Sep 16, 2010 11:51 AM

                                                                      Farm-raised kids have a rather accepting perspective about placing beloved pets on the center of the dinner table.

                                                                      But then, as with Lechter, we may also have a singular affinity for a fine Chianti. Only with offal, of course.

                                                                      1. re: FoodFuser
                                                                        linguafood Sep 16, 2010 01:53 PM

                                                                        Mmmmmmmfarm-raised kids! Their liver is fantastic.

                                                                        1. re: linguafood
                                                                          thew Sep 16, 2010 02:04 PM

                                                                          i prefer them from the wild

                                                                          1. re: thew
                                                                            linguafood Sep 16, 2010 02:13 PM

                                                                            too stringy.

                                                                            1. re: linguafood
                                                                              thew Sep 16, 2010 05:24 PM

                                                                              you need to braise the wild ones. but the flavor beats the farm ones. but then i prefer sirloin to filet as well

                                                                              1. re: thew
                                                                                FoodFuser Sep 16, 2010 06:42 PM

                                                                                Open to all methods, but when it comes to hepatics that beg a more gentle treatment, I'm more for a quick steam or simmer.

                                                                                1. re: FoodFuser
                                                                                  linguafood Sep 16, 2010 08:49 PM

                                                                                  i'm a friend of frying, myself.

                                                              2. re: John E.
                                                                Soop Sep 15, 2010 03:47 AM

                                                                I think you've got lard/butter the wrong way around in this post.

                                                                "I think it will be a long time before most people believe that lard is less healthful than butter."

                                                                Many people already believe lard is less healthy than butter.

                                                                1. re: Soop
                                                                  John E. Sep 15, 2010 09:36 AM

                                                                  Yep, good catch.

                                                                2. re: John E.
                                                                  chefathome Jan 5, 2011 02:47 PM

                                                                  Margarine is also known to exacerbate macular degeneration. My Mom has this horrible disease and has been told to never, ever eat margarine again. And as MD is genetic we have been told the same. Not that I would have to be told, anyway as I LOATHE margarine for many reasons.

                                                                  1. re: chefathome
                                                                    hill food Jan 5, 2011 08:23 PM

                                                                    really? never heard that one (and don't need corroboration cause I would just rather use butter or olive oil or canola or whatever) but a backup reference link would be cool if it's convenient

                                                                    1. re: hill food
                                                                      chefathome Jan 6, 2011 09:16 AM

                                                                      Sure - I'll check with my Mom and get back to you. I also read it in a magazine article - will try to find that as well.

                                                                      EDIT - this quote is taken from a long article from http://pingueculae.com/index.php/vita...

                                                                      "Margarine interferes with the circulation and with the synthesis of gamma linolenic acid. Avoid eating margarine, Crisco and hydrogenated fats. They are all toxic and they interfere with the synthesis of this essential fatty acid. Gamma linolenic acid along with selenium are needed to maintain normal vasculature of the retinal vessels. A study in Australia people who use margarine and sun bath have a 700% higher incidence of malignant melanoma than those who sun bath and use butter. There is also a higher incidence of lung cancer in smokers who use margarine compared to butter."

                                                                      There are those who believe it is an urban myth as well but, as I despise margarine anyway, I'm taking the ophthalmologists' advice to Mom.

                                                                3. re: bkalafut
                                                                  hungryabbey Sep 13, 2010 06:35 PM

                                                                  Even further then healthier, I know a lot of people who think margarine is "low fat" where butter is not. So they think they are opting for the low calorie spread when really they are exactly the same calorically.. and as John E said.. Butter is actually more healthy overall.

                                                                  1. re: hungryabbey
                                                                    Basiorana Jan 5, 2011 02:47 PM

                                                                    I use margarine because I have to (it's cheaper) but keep butter for toast. I KNOW it's healthier because I use a teeny tiny bit on my toast because I know how expensive it is!

                                                                    1. re: Basiorana
                                                                      hill food Jan 5, 2011 08:50 PM

                                                                      one does what one has to. I just use so darn little of either (butter is preferred or rendered fat), I can write off the difference. but (what is a an accepted acronym for Everyone's Mileage WILL Vary)

                                                                      EMWV, there. world peace. done.

                                                                    2. re: hungryabbey
                                                                      Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 10:19 PM

                                                                      Depends on whether you choose lite margarine. Lite margarine is much less calorie-dense than regular butter. Actually, the fat contents of margarine vary dramatically from brand to brand.

                                                                      I cook with butter, but I still use margarine as my primary spread.

                                                                  2. b
                                                                    bkalafut Sep 13, 2010 03:38 AM

                                                                    Sulfites being the source of red wine headache. There are more sulfites in white wine (or dried apricot) yet because of the warning--put on the bottle for the benefit of the rare few who truly do have sulfite sensitivity--silly people think that sulfites must be the cause of their red wine symptoms.

                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: bkalafut
                                                                      MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 12:33 PM

                                                                      Hmmm. And I always only drink red wine because white wine gives me a headache. I always thought it was because it has more sugar (which, for all I know, could also be a myth.)

                                                                    2. Indirect Heat Sep 7, 2010 09:23 PM

                                                                      Basically anything concerning high fructose corn syrup. It's all useless/annoying.

                                                                      High fructose corn syrup is basically the same as sucrose (sugar). They're both equally bad for you.

                                                                      19 Replies
                                                                      1. re: Indirect Heat
                                                                        epabella Sep 8, 2010 10:45 AM

                                                                        "High fructose corn syrup is basically the same as sucrose (sugar). They're both equally bad for you."
                                                                        sure, but it comes from unsustainable monoculture strangling north american petroleum-based industrial agriculture. that's what makes IT "all useless/annoying" (to put it that way).

                                                                        1. re: epabella
                                                                          Jack Flash Sep 8, 2010 02:03 PM

                                                                          And it tastes terrible.

                                                                        2. re: Indirect Heat
                                                                          foreverhungry Sep 9, 2010 10:56 AM

                                                                          No. There's some evidence suggesting that HFCS is processed by the body differently than some other forms of sugar. The research is still in its infancy, but there's some interesting preliminary data so far.

                                                                          It wasn't too long ago (a decade) that people believed a calorie was a calorie was a calorie. That if you ate 500 calories of protein, carbohydrate, or fat, it didn't matter. Today, we know better - the body process difference food types very differently.

                                                                          It also wasn't too long ago (a few years) that people believed that given the exact same meal, it didn't matter when in the day it was eaten. Today, we know better - the same meal eaten immediately after exercise goes to repair damaged muscle and replenish glycogen stores, whereas eaten 4 hours before exercise, more of it will go to fat.

                                                                          Only time and research will tell, but early research so far suggests HFCS may in fact be worse than other sugars.

                                                                          1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                            Indirect Heat Sep 9, 2010 04:53 PM

                                                                            Wrong. Fructose and glucose are metabolized slightly differently. News media have done a terrible job communicating this to the public. Sugar (sucrose) is 50% fructose, 50% glucose. HFCS is 55% fructose, 45% glucose. They're damn near identical, and once they're in your bloodstream, they are 100% identical.

                                                                            1. re: Indirect Heat
                                                                              foreverhungry Sep 9, 2010 06:52 PM

                                                                              Yes, I know the constituents of the various sugars. And I understand sugar uptake mechanisms in the small intestine epithelial lining. But some research studies show that sucrose and HFCS are "seen" by the body in different ways. I'm not saying it's conclusive. And I'm certainly not saying that the media has it right. But some very well done research studies have raised some interesting results. That's all.

                                                                              To say that HFCS and sucrose are seen in the same way is at minimum premature, and most likely incorrect. The real question is exactly under what circumstances those differences are seen.

                                                                              1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                John E. Sep 9, 2010 07:33 PM

                                                                                Do you have any links to these studies?

                                                                                1. re: John E.
                                                                                  foreverhungry Sep 9, 2010 08:12 PM


                                                                                  (note that in this paper, they talk about fru's uptake by GLUT-5 not being insulin dependent, and thus has different effects on satiety and on lipogenesis.



                                                                                  (this one shows differences in serum lipid profiles between consumption of fructose versus glucose).

                                                                                  There are studies out there that show no metabolic or endocrine affects of fructose vs glu or suc. But there are studies - good ones - that do show affects. That suggests that under specific circumstances, HFCS can behave differently than other sugar sources. And it's those circumstances - maybe in combination with high fat diets, or times of high stress (high cortisol levels), that can affect insulin sensitivity, satiety, ghrelin levels, and lipid profiles.

                                                                                  Interesting stuff - but way too early to form definitive opinions.

                                                                                  1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                    Chemicalkinetics Sep 9, 2010 08:36 PM

                                                                                    Thanks. There are alot of research works which show glucose effects to be different than fructose effects. No question that they goes through different pathways. There are many studies which shows glucose to be healthier than fructose. Both of the studies which you cited really focus on glucose vs fructose. However, that is not the real world choice since our choice is rarely about pure fructose vs pure glucose.

                                                                                    The real question that most people talk about is between HFCS which has about 55% fructose and 45% glucose versus sucrose from table sugar. Sucrose is a disaccharide, which is neither glucose or fructose.


                                                                                    Once sucrose is hydrolyzed then it becomes 50% glucose and 50% fructose. I think almost everyone agree that "55% fructose" is really not very different than "50% fructose". The real question is before sucrose undergoes hydrolysis.

                                                                                    One major conclusion point of the second article you cited is: "Results from a short-term study suggest that consuming HFCS- and sucrose-sweetened beverages increases postprandial triacylglycerol concentrations to the same degree as fructose alone " In other words, it suggests that HFCS, sucrose, pure fructose are equally bad when it comes to triacylgylcerol elevation.

                                                                                    1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                      Chemicalkinetics Sep 9, 2010 09:23 PM

                                                                                      I do have an article which is more about HFCS vs sucrose. It is an in press article from the Journal: Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior:


                                                                                      It shows SD rats maintained on diet rich in HFCS gain more abnormal weight than sucrose.

                                                                                      In its dicussion, it states that:

                                                                                      "In Experiment 1 (short-term study, 8 weeks), male rats with access to HFCS drank less total volume and ingested fewer calories in the form of HFCS (mean = 18.0 kcal) than the animals with identical access to a sucrose solution (mean = 27.3 kcal), but the HFCS rats, never the less, became overweight. In these males, both 24-h and 12-h access to HFCS led to increased body weight. In Experiment 2 (long-term study, 6–7 months), HFCS caused an increase in body weight greater than that of sucrose in both male and female rats. This increase in body weight was accompanied by an increase in fat accrual and circulating levels of TG, shows that this increase in body weight is reflective of obesity."

                                                                                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                        foreverhungry Sep 10, 2010 06:30 AM

                                                                                        CK - I get what you're saying about sucrose being a disaccharide of glucose and fructose. True, the papers do focus on glucose v fructose, and you're right - that's not very real world because sugars tend to be consumed as disaccharides. But I don't think it matters, because once cleaved into monosaccharides, GLU and FRU are taken up by the intestinal epithelial via different transporters - GLUT 2 and GLUT 5. GLUT5 appears to react to insulin very differently than with GLUT2, suggesting that fructose then is metabolized (not meaning digested) differently than glucose. The result (hypothetically for now, until research can be more definitive) is that a diet that contains 10% more fructose can, over the long haul, have metabolic effects. It's an interesting question, at any rate, and probably doesn't deserve to be in the "myth" category.

                                                                                        1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                          Chemicalkinetics Sep 10, 2010 10:08 AM

                                                                                          Ah, I see what you are getting at. Thanks.

                                                                                          1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                            MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 12:15 PM

                                                                                            Interesting studies. One of the (many) reasons for my staying away from HFCS is that there are claims that it reduces your belly's "I'm full" sensor, causing you to eat more than you normally would without it.

                                                                                            I think HFCS belongs in this myth category as the way the corn industry promotes it to be healthy and the same as sugar. Because studies are being conducted with results pointing to a different conclusion than the one plastered across our TV screens once a day, the corn industry's advertisement should be considered a myth.

                                                                                            1. re: MichelleRenee
                                                                                              Chemicalkinetics Mar 2, 2011 01:47 PM


                                                                                              I see what you are saying and, to be honest, I don't know enough about the metabolism of HFCS. However, my impression is the other way, I feel most people more or less incline to believe HFCS is worse for us. Either very bad or little bad, but almost always worse.

                                                                                              "the one plastered across our TV screens once a day, the corn industry's advertisement should be considered a myth."

                                                                                              I don't remember there was any HFCS ads on TV. I have seen the Wisconsin Cheese ads and the California Cheese commercial, of course the avocado TV ads... etc.

                                                                                              1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 02:38 PM

                                                                                                I think they're still pretty new. The first one I saw was about a year ago. They're sponsored by the Corn Refiners Association (CRA). The first ones tried to paint the people who say it's bad as moronic sheep who just repeat what they hear. They've evolved into a kind of public announcement-type advertisement. But I think they're still pretty offensive, especially as there's no concrete proof that it's not worse for you than other sugars. As of yet, any evidence seems to point the other way. I don't know how they're allowed to advertise like that on TV.

                                                                                                1. re: MichelleRenee
                                                                                                  Chemicalkinetics Mar 2, 2011 03:01 PM

                                                                                                  I might have seen one then, but it is far and in between. It wasn't as proliferated as the cheese commercials. Are you talking about this one? I saw maybe twice:


                                                                                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                    hill food Mar 3, 2011 11:03 PM

                                                                                                    oh ck, they are all over primetime network TV these days.

                                                                              2. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 10:14 PM

                                                                                A professor friend of my mother's in nutrition recently did a diet of nothing but ice cream and candy bars as a stunt to show how much really does depend on the calorie being a calorie. He lost his goal, which was, I believe, 10lbs.

                                                                                Of course, what you eat can affect your hunger levels, which in turn affects how much you eat. He never had an argument against that, just that, as far as your body is concerned, the total calorie count is more important than where it comes from for weight gain/loss. (He also did not question that such a diet would be terrible for you over the long term!)

                                                                                1. re: Henny Penny
                                                                                  foreverhungry Jan 6, 2011 05:42 AM

                                                                                  I dispute that. There's excellent research that shows that under specific circumstances (such as if the meal is post-exercise), different "calories" are processed different ways. That is, if we're talking about a gram of glucose, fat, or protein, those macromolecules don't all get processed in the same ways. That leads to different results down the line - being packaged as a fat store, which means you're likely to be hungry again sooner, or packaged into glucose for immediate use for your minute-to-minute energy needs, or, in some cases, send to muscles for tissue repair (such as post exercise).

                                                                                  Can you lose weight on ice cream and candy bars? Sure. But this shows absolutely nothing, since its also possible to pack on serious poundage eating nothing but apples and kale. That stunt does nothing to show that a calorie is a calorie is a calorie. And there's a large body (no pun intended) of research to show that all calories are not the same.

                                                                                  1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                    goodhealthgourmet Jan 31, 2011 06:24 PM

                                                                                    assuming that Henny Penny is talking about Mark Haub from KSU, the point of his experiment wasn't to illustrate that "a calorie is a calorie is a calorie" (which, as you said, is not the case), but to show that overall calorie *restriction* is they key to weight loss even if you're eating nothing but crap.

                                                                                    in case you want to read more of the details:

                                                                            2. celtic_tiger Sep 4, 2010 10:55 PM

                                                                              All food is waiting to kill you as soon as you turn your back.


                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                              1. re: celtic_tiger
                                                                                ZenSojourner Sep 4, 2010 11:16 PM

                                                                                Dun-dun dun-dun dun-dun dun-dun dun-dun AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRrggggllleee

                                                                                1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                  linguafood Sep 5, 2010 08:50 AM


                                                                                  1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                    celtic_tiger Sep 6, 2010 02:20 AM

                                                                                    /eets fase

                                                                                  2. re: celtic_tiger
                                                                                    Bill Hunt Sep 5, 2010 08:10 PM

                                                                                    Help! I've eaten, and can't get up!!!!!


                                                                                  3. dave_c Aug 28, 2010 07:55 PM

                                                                                    Another myth that is useless... The floating egg test - "Eggs are bad when they float and should be thrown out."

                                                                                    A floating egg just means it has a larger airsac which is most likely due to age. The egg may be older, but it's not bad.

                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: dave_c
                                                                                      alkapal Aug 29, 2010 04:17 AM

                                                                                      if the egg weighs the same as a duck -- which floats like wood -- then is it a witch -- or just a "bad egg"? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zrzMhU...

                                                                                      1. re: alkapal
                                                                                        Chemicalkinetics Aug 29, 2010 06:36 AM

                                                                                        Ha ha ha. If she weighs the same as a duck.... ha ha ha

                                                                                    2. h
                                                                                      hungryabbey Aug 28, 2010 06:07 PM

                                                                                      When packages state "TRANS FAT FREE", the naive consumer thinks "Oh, yay, its fat free!!"


                                                                                      When a package reads "fat free" or "low in fat", the consumer thinks its low calorie or diet food.

                                                                                      Unfortunately, fat is flavour. You take out fat, you need to replace the flavour. Usually its either with sugar or salt, and often, the fat free version is almost just as high in calories as the original.. and if its replacing fat with sugar and/or salt, I'd argue that the full fat version is healthier.

                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: hungryabbey
                                                                                        goodhealthgourmet Aug 28, 2010 07:23 PM

                                                                                        we could devote an entire thread to the topic of misleading and misunderstood package labels, but that's not myth as much as shady business practice, communication breakdown, or ignorance.the ones that piss me off the most are packages that are legally allowed to make claims like "zero grams trans fat PER SERVING" because a single serving contains less than 1 total gram...so people think that when they eat the product they're not consuming *any* trans fat. really, how many average Americans actually limit themselves to a single serving of any packaged junk food in a sitting?! very few, and many go back for MORE.

                                                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                          hungryabbey Aug 28, 2010 08:01 PM

                                                                                          Good point.

                                                                                      2. f
                                                                                        foreverhungry Aug 28, 2010 11:16 AM

                                                                                        The myth that mayo can cause spoilage of potato salads.

                                                                                        False. Commercially made mayo is high in acid and contains preservatives. When's the last time anyone's had a jar of Hellman's go bad in the fridge. I use mine so infrequently that it takes me about a year to go through a jar. Never had any issues.

                                                                                        Rather, it's poorly washed potatoes that cause food-poisoning related issues - a bacteria commonly found in soil, and thus on tatie skins

                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                          linguafood Aug 28, 2010 12:18 PM

                                                                                          as mentioned further upthread.

                                                                                          1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                            Ruth Lafler Aug 28, 2010 02:03 PM

                                                                                            Except the potatoes have to be cooked -- usually boiled for at least 20 minutes -- before you can make them into potato salad, which should kill all the bacteria. But perhaps there's some cross-contamination, since most people probably aren't as conscious about potatoes as they would be about meat.

                                                                                            1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                              Karl S Aug 28, 2010 02:12 PM

                                                                                              No, bacillus cereus spores can survive the boiling point, which is why starchy foods that are boiled like rice and potatoes are breeding grounds.

                                                                                              1. re: Karl S
                                                                                                Ruth Lafler Aug 28, 2010 11:04 PM

                                                                                                Wow. those are some tough bugs!

                                                                                                1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                  Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 09:00 PM

                                                                                                  Probably have to irradiate them. Maybe with a radioactive banana?


                                                                                          2. Karl S Aug 28, 2010 05:36 AM

                                                                                            Here's another one: vegetable oil is "healthier" than cream or butter.

                                                                                            If you have problems with cholesterol that is sensitive to butterfat, yes. But otherwise, no.

                                                                                            Per unit of volume, butter has 80% of the calories of oil, heavy cream has less than 50% and lower-fat creams even less.

                                                                                            So that vinaigrette, unless made with disproportionate amounts of vinegar and/or water, typically has more calories per unit of volume than a "creamy" dressing.

                                                                                            8 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: Karl S
                                                                                              foreverhungry Aug 28, 2010 07:26 AM

                                                                                              Problem is the "per unit volume" qualifier. You tend to use greater amounts of the creamy dressing than a vinaigrette. The thickness of the creamy dressing make it more difficult to thinly coat a salad, so folks tend to use more of it. Also, many dressing recipes I've seen tend to use more vinegar proportionally in vinaigrettes than in creamy dressings, so there's more of the "fat" substance in the creamy dressings.

                                                                                              1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                                Chemicalkinetics Aug 28, 2010 07:35 AM

                                                                                                Right. The infamous example is cream cheese on bagal vs butter on bagel. Although cream cheese has less fat and cholesterol than butter in a per unit fashion, people put so much more cream cheese on a bagel than they would using butter.

                                                                                                I have regularly seen people put this much cream cheese on bagel:


                                                                                                Have you seen anyone put that much butter in comparison? I haven't.

                                                                                                1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                  alkapal Aug 28, 2010 07:44 AM

                                                                                                  dang straight! make mine veggie cream cheese on a toasted sesame bagel, please.

                                                                                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                    thew Aug 28, 2010 10:09 AM

                                                                                                    there used to be a peanut butter ad, skippy perhaps, (with marie osmand, i think) that told us that it had less fat per ounce than butter. even as a kid i saw through that.

                                                                                                  2. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                                    Karl S Aug 28, 2010 08:59 AM

                                                                                                    The opposite is true for me, actually. That is, I tend to use less creamy and more vinaigrette. And the creamy dressings need less vinegar to give flavor than the oil-based ones.

                                                                                                    1. re: Karl S
                                                                                                      foreverhungry Aug 28, 2010 11:13 AM

                                                                                                      "And the creamy dressings need less vinegar to give flavor than the oil-based ones."
                                                                                                      Precisely. That's part of the issue. Creamy dressings use less vinegar for equal volume. So what's the vinegar replaced with? A fat agent.

                                                                                                      Vinaigrettes tend to have more vinegar proportionally, which mean less of the other stuff - oil.

                                                                                                      But the real health consideration, which you did mention above, is the saturated vs non-saturated fat issue. A couple tablespoons of olive oil is unlikely to cause health issues - see the Mediterranean diet. But the equivalent of saturated fat, for some people, that's a different issue.

                                                                                                      1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                                        Chemicalkinetics Aug 28, 2010 01:33 PM

                                                                                                        See. I am not sure that is the main difference between Mediterranean diet vs US diet. I think we (Americans) simply eat in much larger portion than they do.

                                                                                                        1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                          MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 12:07 PM

                                                                                                          Creamy dressings also tend to have more sugars, and often it's in the form of high-fructose corn syrup....

                                                                                                2. v
                                                                                                  virtualguthrie Aug 26, 2010 06:07 PM

                                                                                                  I don't know why but it drives me crazy when people say that bbq ribs should "fall right off the bone," or that "it's all about the sauce."

                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: virtualguthrie
                                                                                                    Chemicalkinetics Aug 26, 2010 07:52 PM

                                                                                                    Hmm, I agree. I don't think bbq rubs fall right off the bone should be the only criteria. I have rarely heard "it's all about the sauce". I have heard "it is all about the rub."

                                                                                                    1. re: virtualguthrie
                                                                                                      dave_c Aug 27, 2010 08:34 AM

                                                                                                      I was just about to post the opposite... lol!

                                                                                                      Myth: Good BBQ ribs shouldn't fall off the bone/should have "bite".

                                                                                                      I think it comes down to what you like, but the "ribs should have bite" criteria is mainly a judging criteria for cook-offs. It's just a way to spread the points out... sort of like a presentation criteria.

                                                                                                      I do agree that good ribs should not rely on sauce.

                                                                                                      1. re: dave_c
                                                                                                        observor Aug 27, 2010 08:39 AM

                                                                                                        First and foremost should be the quality/flavor of the meat itself, followed by texture, with the rub and or sauce acting as an accompaniment, in my opinion. You're eating ribs, you're not eating sauce, so how could it be all about the sauce? I think the meat should have a minor "bite".

                                                                                                        1. re: observor
                                                                                                          chefathome Jan 5, 2011 02:44 PM

                                                                                                          For ribs it's all about the layer of bark.

                                                                                                          1. re: chefathome
                                                                                                            MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 12:04 PM

                                                                                                            I LOVE my rib meat falling off the bone. And I never had ribs without sauce, but I love sauce. I realize this must sounds like blasphemy to you folks, but that's just how I like 'em. Fallin' off the bone and dripping in some good BBQ or Jack Daniel's sauce.

                                                                                                    2. dave_c Aug 26, 2010 12:10 PM

                                                                                                      1) Worms come out of pork (raw or cooked) when soaked in coca-cola or vinegar.

                                                                                                      2) When cooking, pressing down on a burger or steak "seals in" the juices.

                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: dave_c
                                                                                                        GraydonCarter Aug 26, 2010 01:28 PM

                                                                                                        I always wondered how the worms got in there in the first place.

                                                                                                        You put some hamburger in an airtight container and maggots appear within days. How did they get there? The air? The hamburger?

                                                                                                        1. re: GraydonCarter
                                                                                                          small h Aug 26, 2010 01:30 PM

                                                                                                          Spontaneous generation. What else could it be?

                                                                                                          1. re: small h
                                                                                                            Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:57 PM



                                                                                                          2. re: GraydonCarter
                                                                                                            John E. Sep 4, 2010 04:42 PM

                                                                                                            I realize this post is a couple weeks old, but if you put hamburger in an air-tight container and maggots appear within days, that means a fly landed on the hamburger and laid eggs before the hamburger was put into the airtight container.

                                                                                                            1. re: John E.
                                                                                                              Chemicalkinetics Sep 4, 2010 05:11 PM

                                                                                                              Did you forget your education about Spontaneous Generation?


                                                                                                        2. Sooeygun Aug 26, 2010 11:29 AM

                                                                                                          Heard a myth today on the local morning show, yet again - sugar makes kids hyperactive

                                                                                                          27 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: Sooeygun
                                                                                                            Ruth Lafler Aug 26, 2010 11:38 AM

                                                                                                            You will never be able to convince people that's not true, despite the numerous studies that have proven it's a myth.

                                                                                                            1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                              ZenSojourner Aug 26, 2010 07:03 PM

                                                                                                              Citations, please. The studies I've seen show no link between diagnosable ADHD and sugar. There is a link for some children between sugar ingestion and a temporary state of hyperactivity.

                                                                                                              1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                Ruth Lafler Aug 26, 2010 07:24 PM

                                                                                                                If you google "sugar hyperactivity" you'll get plenty of them. Here's one: http://www.medicinenet.com/script/mai...

                                                                                                                This article points out that if the parents know their child has had a lot of sugar, their perception of their child's behavior is affected. I'll note that in the example you gave, you knew your child had eaten sugar and you were *expecting* some kind of adverse behavior and assumed that the behavior you observed was caused by the sugar.

                                                                                                                1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                  ZenSojourner Aug 26, 2010 07:27 PM

                                                                                                                  Ruth, I'm a trained professional. My son NEVER behaved like that - ever - unless he had had a sugar overload. Also note that I could smell it on him. He metabolized sugar differently in a way that he thankfully outgrew.

                                                                                                                  And I'm sorry, but a WebMD page isn't going to cut it here. Give me PEER REVIEWED professional articles that show there is NEVER any possibility of sugar sensitivity in some children. Because the ones I've read show that there is such a link but only in a minority of children.

                                                                                                                  1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                    Chemicalkinetics Aug 26, 2010 07:49 PM

                                                                                                                    "I could smell it on him"

                                                                                                                    You actually think you can smell sugar overload?

                                                                                                                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                                      goodhealthgourmet Aug 26, 2010 07:59 PM

                                                                                                                      if the person has a metabolic imbalance, absolutely.

                                                                                                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                        alkapal Aug 27, 2010 07:12 AM

                                                                                                                        i recall that a diabetic's sweet smell from missing an insulin shot was a clue in a murder mystery on law & order.

                                                                                                                        """A fruity odor to the breath occurs as the body attempts to get rid of excess acetone through the breathing. This is a sign of ketoacidosis, which may occur in diabetes. It is a potentially life-threatening condition.""" http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/en...

                                                                                                                        1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                          Chemicalkinetics Aug 27, 2010 07:57 AM


                                                                                                                          Are we talking diabetes now? Since you are talking about insulin shot, then it must be type 1 diabete and not type 2. It is a serious condition. Having ketoacidosis (diabetics) is the last thing I will relate to a child being hyperactive or eating too much sugar.

                                                                                                                          Type 1 diabetic patients actually feel tired and weak because they cannot effectively use the sugars. You won't hear about diabetic patients being hyperactive.


                                                                                                                          I guess what I am saying is that I just don't see how a "sugar overloaded and super hyper kid" have much to do with diabetics ketoacidosis

                                                                                                                          1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                                            alkapal Aug 27, 2010 08:33 AM

                                                                                                                            i'm not talking about kids and sugar overload.

                                                                                                                            if you notice, i was referring to good health gourmet's post, and riffing on the ability to smell "metabolic imbalance." i think diabetes also counts as a metabolic imbalance, no?

                                                                                                                        2. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                          Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 09:56 PM

                                                                                                                          I think if she can smell it on him, hyperactivity is her LEAST concern.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Henny Penny
                                                                                                                            aggiecat Jan 31, 2011 11:36 AM

                                                                                                                            I was always convinced that it was NOT the sugar that caused my Little Brother's hyperactivity, it just gave him waaaay to much fuel to do whatever crazy hyeractive thing he was charging around doing. Hello, streaking nekkid thru the neighborhood at 3 yo. Although the crash and burn at the end was always a welcome respite.

                                                                                                                      2. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                        Ruth Lafler Aug 26, 2010 08:16 PM

                                                                                                                        I would never say that there is never any possibility of anything -- individuals react differently to all kinds of things. Perhaps your son metabolized sugar differently. But that doesn't mean that "sugar makes kids hyper" it means that your son had a particular condition where he reacted abnormally to sugar.

                                                                                                                        1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                          c oliver Aug 26, 2010 08:39 PM

                                                                                                                          Agree. We can all get a little overactive with too much sugar. And an individual can have an extreme reaction to anything. But, yes, after years of study there appears to be no link between sugar intake and true hyperactivity.

                                                                                                                        2. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                          mpjmph Aug 27, 2010 05:20 AM

                                                                                                                          Here's a meta-analysis of studies looking at the relationship between candy and hyperactivity: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/87...

                                                                                                                          None of the studies reviewed found any relationship between sugar or candy consumption and hyperactivity.

                                                                                                                          1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                            jgg13 Aug 27, 2010 07:39 AM

                                                                                                                            If you want something that's from a "PEER REVIEWED professional article", you're not going to get something that says there is "NEVER any possibility" of anything, really. Just sayin'.

                                                                                                                            1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                              Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 09:55 PM

                                                                                                                              Bet I could feed your son sugar and he wouldn't "react like that." I make it very clear that if anyone believes that sugar makes them "crazy/hyper" that they don't need the treat/birthday cake/whatever. Funnily enough, every child always assures me sincerely that this is not a problem THEY suffer from. And funnily enough, they don't.

                                                                                                                              There is NOT a study that shows that there's a link in a small minority of children. It's impossible through the studies that have been conducted to prove that there ISN'T one. HUGE difference.

                                                                                                                              It's the idiot parents standing around and talking about how the kids will get all "hyper" who convince children of this.

                                                                                                                              1. re: Henny Penny
                                                                                                                                hill food Jan 5, 2011 10:29 PM

                                                                                                                                I'd think that a lot is just kids are hyper to begin and with no stimuli, but I can understand why some don't want to boost that. (but dang I wish I still had that energy)

                                                                                                                                1. re: hill food
                                                                                                                                  almansa Mar 2, 2011 01:31 PM

                                                                                                                                  One of my kids, who is naturally "energetic," cannot have processed sugar dissolved in liquid in large amounts (soda, sweetened juices). He goes way beyond hyper, bordering on out of control. My friend refuses to serve him the "fresh squeezed" juices at his restaurant anymore.

                                                                                                                            2. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                              ZenSojourner Aug 26, 2010 08:02 PM

                                                                                                                              Well dang it, I don't have access to medical journal databases from here, and my son's account doesn't have access at his university because he's a PolySci major who normally wouldn't need online access to the medical journals. It's not worth my time or the effort to go into town to the med school library just to debunk this particular partial myth.

                                                                                                                              I say partial myth because research has consistently shown no reliable correlation between diagnosable ADHD (attention deficity hyperactivity disorder) or ADD (attention deficit disorder) - only one of those terms is currently technically in use and I can never remember which one. But basically sugar is unlikely (very unlikely) to be the cause of ADHD/ADD. We can only say it's unlikely because you can't disprove a connection, but any connection is so tenuous as to be dismissable. It's all correlational as far as I can remember, which can't show causation.

                                                                                                                              The vast vast majority of studies are done on a population of ADHD/ADD children. There have been studies that have shown that some children - a small minority - who cannot be diagnosed with ADHD/ADD do have trouble metabolizing sugar and do show behavioral changes, usually characterizable as "hyperactivity" to a lay population. Most (I say most because it's possible when working with a small minority like this that some get missed) seem to grow out of it before the age of 5.

                                                                                                                              My son seemed to grow out of it around the age of 4. Somewhere between 3 and 4 as far as I can recall.

                                                                                                                              Many food allergies and sensitivities in small children are known to result in behavioral changes. This does not translate to those children being "hyperactive" in the sense of having a diagnosable disorder (namely ADHD/ADD). Most children either grow out of it (more likely gradually lose the sensitivity with exposure) or else they develop full-blown allergies which are recognized as such.

                                                                                                                              It has nothing to do with ADHD/ADD, which is how many lay people think of "hyperactivity". So if that's how you're defining "hyperactive" it's true there's probably no connection. However, for the minority of children with food sensitivities, there are noticeable behavioral changes on ingestion of the substance to which they are sensitive which to all intents and purposes looks just like "hyperactivity" and in fact is, it's just not related to ADHD/ADD. Or autism, or any of the other things that parents are grasping at dietary straws to explain.

                                                                                                                              Some children really are sensitive to sugar, or certain dyes, or chocolate, or strawberries, or what have you. But this is not the explanation for ADHD/ADD or autism or a host of other things parents would like an explanation for. They're just glitches in the functioning of a child's metabolism which usually smooth out with time and occasionally turn into actual allergies. It's a developmental thing that fortunately only a minority of children have to go through.

                                                                                                                              One of my younger brothers was born with a sensitivity to nearly everything, including breast milk. He nearly starved before they found something he could eat. However, his system eventually "learned" how to metabolize foods, including dairy, just fine. By the time he was about 3 or 4 - about the same time my son stopped reacting to sugar overload - he was eating normally, and he has no food allergies now. Fortunately most children don't have these problems, and even more fortunately, for the minority who do, it isn't as broad in spectrum as it was for my brother. And most fortunately of all, most children who do go through this also get over it.

                                                                                                                              1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                GraydonCarter Aug 27, 2010 07:38 AM

                                                                                                                                Aren't ALL boys between 3 and 5 extremely active?

                                                                                                                              2. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                                Cachetes Sep 4, 2010 04:33 PM

                                                                                                                                I think part of it is kids' perceptions as well. My son knows that when we pull out the cupcakes or ice cream, it's a special treat. He proceeds to get excited and jump around before he even as a bite of it. Parents' misconceptions and kids' excitement together, and bam, time to medicate your kid for ADHD.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Cachetes
                                                                                                                                  thew Sep 4, 2010 04:37 PM

                                                                                                                                  what a lot of hooey. sometimes my kid does indeed get way more out of control with sugar. not always, and i understand the difference between a momentary reaction to a change in brain chemistry and a syndrome that needs treatment.

                                                                                                                                  sugar is a drug. (and i do not use the word drug as some negative bogeyman) it effects your brain chemistry. that is a fact. it does not cause hyperactivity. it does change behavior to a small degree. less than methamphetamine. more than eating, say, sand. so what?

                                                                                                                            3. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                              acorniv Mar 2, 2011 11:07 PM

                                                                                                                              Because of the way thestudies were conducted. There are a few things they need to do, like allergy testing andmicronutrient testing ( for malabsorption) and diabetes testing. The children used in those studies are typically healthy, but the kids with problems with sugar are not. It's a farce.

                                                                                                                            4. re: Sooeygun
                                                                                                                              thew Aug 26, 2010 11:43 AM

                                                                                                                              no, it's just the low end of the speed spectrum.....

                                                                                                                              1. re: Sooeygun
                                                                                                                                ZenSojourner Aug 26, 2010 11:45 AM

                                                                                                                                That's true, but only for SOME kids. Keeping in mind, of course, that "hyperactive" and having ADHD are totally different things.

                                                                                                                                My son was so sensitive to sugar when he was little that it was scary. For example, I gave the daycare strict instructions to scrape the icing off before letting him have cake or cupcakes, which they served whenever a kid had a birthday. They told me they would.


                                                                                                                                I came in to pick him up one day and I could smell it on him. There was something about the way he metabolized sugar. I could literally smell it on him, the way you can smell garlic on some people.

                                                                                                                                So I said to the worker, "Whose birthday was it today?" She told me, then it occurred to her to wonder (and ask) how I knew. I just said, "You didn't scrape the icing off Kevin's cupcake, did you?" She uncomfortably admitted that she had not. This was just about an hour after the birthday party so I knew what I was in for as soon as I got home. If it had been an hour or two earlier than that, they would have had their hands full at the day care center. Keep in mind my son was normally a quiet well-behaved articulate child. He was not quite 2 when this happened, maybe 16 or 18 months old.

                                                                                                                                Shortly after we got home, he began to pound his head on the wall. I moved him away from the wall, and he started to pound his head on the floor. The kid was bouncing off the ceilings. He was pinging so badly I couldn't believe it myself, it was the worst reaction to sugar I'd ever seen, even for him. I had to put him in his swinging chair to keep him from hurting himself. It took the rest of the evening for it to wear off, and/or for him to wear himself out so that he finally fell asleep.

                                                                                                                                Thank god he grew out of it, but he really couldn't handle a sugar overload AT ALL when he was little.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Sooeygun
                                                                                                                                  Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:56 PM

                                                                                                                                  I think that overly loud restaurants make kids hyperactive, regardless of their sugar intake. However, it could be that they mixed their alcohols???


                                                                                                                                  1. re: Sooeygun
                                                                                                                                    acorniv Mar 2, 2011 11:03 PM

                                                                                                                                    If they want to do studies on this, they should hang out at a Boy Scout camp. We proved one boy ( and later, his brother) were allergic to sugar, and it sure did make them hyperractive. His parents refused to believe it, and his mom would send him with literally a trunk full - like 30 pounds of candy for a week at camp. He worked on my son's lengthy Eagle project, and showed up sober the first day. We were astounded. I asked what he had for breakfast and he said potstickers. I told him how impressed we were with how well he did, and asked if he could do that every work day. He agreed, and stuck to his promise. He liked himself and the project so well, that he decided to become an archeologist. ( they wove an intricate mat for a. Archeological museum). After the project ended, I took his dad aside and told him of the agreement and how incredibly well he did, and said that i really thought his son was allergic to sugar. He looked over at his typically out of cntrol son, watched him for a few minutes and then smiled and thanked me and said he'd look into it. I can just imagine thebattle royale that insued with his sugar pushing wife, but by then I had both the son and his dad on my side. Or rather, on the side of the boy's well being. He recently got an Eagle award himself :-).

                                                                                                                                    The studies on this subject did not take into considereation that some people are allergic to sugar. It merely studied average joe's. And came to a very wrong conclusion.

                                                                                                                                    And now people are spreading rumors far and wide and parents and doctors are completely ignoring the possibility that sugar is indeed causing hyperactivity. It is truly a travesty.

                                                                                                                                    Years ago, I fit shoes on children, and many times saw moms give kids candy to 'calm them down'. It always had the opposite effect. And the parent could never understand. Sometimes I think that happens because the kid got fussy because he needed a meal, I leanred back then that sugar sould always be allowed to bind to a fat beforebeing digested. So Zi gave my kids reeses peanut butter cups or ice cream, etc. Sweets that had fats too.

                                                                                                                                  2. Karl S Aug 26, 2010 10:14 AM

                                                                                                                                    That rice is hypoallergenic as compared to, say, wheat.

                                                                                                                                    It depends on where you live. In Asia, rice allergies are more common than in the West. Et cet.

                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                    1. re: Karl S
                                                                                                                                      acorniv Mar 2, 2011 10:51 PM

                                                                                                                                      My kids had allergy testing and my dd came out with few sensitivities, but was allergic to all the things that you start with with a food elimination diet, LOL. Rice was one.

                                                                                                                                    2. St.Ridiculous Aug 25, 2010 05:53 PM

                                                                                                                                      1.) Season your pasta water. No one likes flat, doughy tasting pasta. There's no real measure. (indicative of water hardness / other mineral contents). However, it SHOULDN'T be "salty" but taste markedly of salt. kapeesh?
                                                                                                                                      2.) Thicker asparagus is usually marked by being more tender, but in most restaurant applications, you would cut more off, or literally peel the bottom half of your veg to reveal the softer innards. You always want thinner asparagus, this is a good sign of seasonality, as well as a developed flavor (not scraggly, but thin)
                                                                                                                                      3.) Certain varieties of mushrooms should never be washed. primarily due to the loss of ESSENCE from them... do some research to find out which ones can be washed with no problem (ie button, porcini, and shitake) and the ones that you'd be doing severe injustice to by all measure of the laws of nature (ie chanterelles, and other aromatic assortments)
                                                                                                                                      4.) Bananas ARE slightly radioactive --- FACT.

                                                                                                                                      10 Replies
                                                                                                                                      1. re: St.Ridiculous
                                                                                                                                        porker Aug 26, 2010 04:12 AM

                                                                                                                                        Isn't EVERYHING slightly radioactive?

                                                                                                                                        1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                          Pipenta Aug 28, 2010 07:43 AM

                                                                                                                                          You mean besides bananas?


                                                                                                                                          1. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                            porker Aug 28, 2010 02:25 PM

                                                                                                                                            Yeah, besides bananas...
                                                                                                                                            "Radioactivity is present everywhere (and has been since the formation of the earth)."
                                                                                                                                            - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environm...

                                                                                                                                            1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                              ZenSojourner Aug 28, 2010 04:45 PM

                                                                                                                                              "I'm not uptight -
                                                                                                                                              not unattractive -
                                                                                                                                              Turn me LOOSE tonight -
                                                                                                                                              I'ma radioactive!"

                                                                                                                                              1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                porker Aug 29, 2010 04:41 AM

                                                                                                                                                And don't you stand
                                                                                                                                                stand too close
                                                                                                                                                you might catch IT.

                                                                                                                                                Reputed to be written after 3:00am at the Electric Banana - coincidence?
                                                                                                                                                Kinda freaky now that I think about it...

                                                                                                                                        2. re: St.Ridiculous
                                                                                                                                          linguafood Aug 26, 2010 08:17 AM

                                                                                                                                          I never heard that rinsing chanterelles (and those are DIRTY mofos) washes away the flavor. As mentioned upthread, I have no qualms throwing them in my salad spinner for a good sloshing around, and then spinning them dry.

                                                                                                                                          Chanterelles in particular release such a nice broth when sautéed (in rendered speck with onions, of course), you basically already have your 'sauce' to go with them. Just add a spoonful of crème fraîche & some chopped parsely - et voilá: dinner done.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                            haggisdragon Aug 26, 2010 09:16 AM


                                                                                                                                            1. re: haggisdragon
                                                                                                                                              linguafood Aug 26, 2010 09:27 AM

                                                                                                                                              Yum indeed. If only I could get chanterelles in these parts. And I always thought PA was the mushroom state....

                                                                                                                                          2. re: St.Ridiculous
                                                                                                                                            c oliver Aug 26, 2010 12:02 PM

                                                                                                                                            I've never washed any mushroom any time. And haven't used a brush on them in about 40 years. Still here to tell about it.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: c oliver
                                                                                                                                              TongoRad Aug 26, 2010 02:15 PM

                                                                                                                                              Well, I have been rinsing them for at least 20 years with no ill effect. It's not so much that I'm concerned about bacteria, but not having any dirty flavors in there. Also, the brushing routine seems so needlessly tedious. In the vast majority of cases I'd say that rinsing isn't harmful.

                                                                                                                                              I am willing to carve out an exception for chanterelles, though. All I need is for somebody to provide me with a steady supply so that I may gain some real world experience with them ;)

                                                                                                                                          3. AnnCook Aug 25, 2010 05:21 PM

                                                                                                                                            These might be relegated to farm life, but my mother always told me -

                                                                                                                                            To put a quarter on the bottom of a jar or bowl when I'm hand-making cream or butter.

                                                                                                                                            Never to cook turkey on a Monday because it'll always turn out tough.

                                                                                                                                            and my favorite....

                                                                                                                                            Brown eggs are the best because they have more protein and flavor.

                                                                                                                                            14 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: AnnCook
                                                                                                                                              JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 26, 2010 03:24 PM

                                                                                                                                              I know why to do the quarter in the jar when making butter... when you stop hearing it clank around, you're done.

                                                                                                                                              And I love the difference between white and brown eggs: White eggs are laid by chickens with white earlobes, brown eggs are laid by chickens with red earlobes. And if you get your hands on an Araucana chicken with blue earlobes, you guessed it, that bird's going to lay blue eggs.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                Rasam Aug 26, 2010 03:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                And I have a hypothesis about not cooking turkey on Mondays - wasn't that the traditional day (in the pioneer US) to hand wash the entire family's laundry? So your attention is not on the cooking?

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rasam
                                                                                                                                                  JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 27, 2010 01:54 AM

                                                                                                                                                  You know, I think you're right on the money there. I just looked around for confirmation, and apparently the term Blue Monday refers to the dismal nature of having to spend all day doing laundry, and to the bluing solution used to keep clothes looking white. So yes, roasting a turkey on a Monday when you're normally concentrating on the laundry would be a recipe for disaster.

                                                                                                                                                2. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                  Pipenta Aug 28, 2010 07:41 AM

                                                                                                                                                  And if they are americaunas (half breed araucana + whatever, and most of them are because full-blooded araucanas have reproductive issues and are very hard to come by, which is a pity because they have eggs that are a much stronger blue than the mixed breeds), the eggs will be either blue, green, white or pinkish brown. But not from the same chicken. A given chicken only lays one color eggs.

                                                                                                                                                  Maran chickens lay eggs with such dark brown shells that they look like chocolate! But the color of the shell has no impact on the flavor.

                                                                                                                                                  Emu eggs are a marvelous dark, dark, dark cobalt color.

                                                                                                                                                3. re: AnnCook
                                                                                                                                                  Karl S Aug 26, 2010 04:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                  there is one advantage to brown eggs: when, as is frequently the case, you are mixing them with white ingredients, it's much much easier to tell when you've gotten a shell fragment. And, because the inside of the brown shell is white, it still works if you are mixing it with beige ingredients.

                                                                                                                                                  I've relied on this many, many times.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Karl S
                                                                                                                                                    jgg13 Aug 27, 2010 07:38 AM

                                                                                                                                                    Another advantage, as the local egg council commercials burned into my psyche as a child, "brown eggs are local eggs, and local eggs are fresh!"

                                                                                                                                                    Of course, that also is likely a myth ;)

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: jgg13
                                                                                                                                                      taos Sep 12, 2010 12:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                      As far as I can tell, the only difference between brown and white eggs is geography. Where I live in New England, most of the eggs are brown. I've noticed in other parts of the country, most of the eggs are white. It doesn't seem to matter if the eggs are local, organic, free range, vegetarian-fed, cheap or expensive. The color seems to be determined by geography. I'm guessing it has to do with different breeds that are prevalent in different parts of the country.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: taos
                                                                                                                                                        John E. Sep 12, 2010 03:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                        You are correct when you say that the only difference between white and brown eggs is the color. The reason is different breeds of course, but the actual reason for New England to have more brown eggs is likely because the customers like them better. The growers will fill the demand. If customers started to ask for white eggs, then more white eggs would start appearing in the stores.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: taos
                                                                                                                                                          almansa Sep 15, 2010 03:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                          Brown eggs are cheaper before Easter.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: almansa
                                                                                                                                                            MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 11:57 AM

                                                                                                                                                            I know it's purely psychological, but I feel like brown eggs taste better and just feel more fresh. I like an egg of any color, but opt for brown when I can. Makes me feel like I'm livin' on a farm.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MichelleRenee
                                                                                                                                                              hill food Mar 3, 2011 10:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                              our neighbor's are sometimes green and even a pastel turquoise

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: hill food
                                                                                                                                                                Andy Poodle Mar 24, 2011 05:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                I have a friend who has ducks. They eat the duck eggs like they were chicken eggs. They have green, blue, and orange tints...like easter eggs or something.

                                                                                                                                                                Brown eggs DO taste better than white eggs. I was told by my grandfather that brown eggs don't get "candled", though. I guess that is or once was a method to check the quality.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Andy Poodle
                                                                                                                                                                  thew Mar 24, 2011 06:26 PM

                                                                                                                                                                  candling was to check if an egg was fertilized or not

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Andy Poodle
                                                                                                                                                                    John E. Mar 24, 2011 08:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    If the Rhode Island Reds eat the same feed as the hens that lay white eggs, the taste and nutrition of brown and white eggs is exactly the same. The only difference is the color and what the hens eat.

                                                                                                                                                    2. porker Aug 25, 2010 04:12 PM

                                                                                                                                                      eating peanut butter after midnight grows hair on your palms.

                                                                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                      1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                        ricepad Aug 25, 2010 07:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                        I *knew* it wasn't caused by what my father told me....

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ricepad
                                                                                                                                                          al b. darned Aug 25, 2010 08:21 PM


                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ricepad
                                                                                                                                                            thew Aug 25, 2010 09:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                            those aren't mutually exclusive.....

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: thew
                                                                                                                                                              goodhealthgourmet Aug 25, 2010 09:55 PM


                                                                                                                                                          2. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                            ipsedixit Aug 26, 2010 09:40 AM

                                                                                                                                                            I've always been told that that other activity made your palms hairy ...

                                                                                                                                                          3. toodie jane Aug 25, 2010 02:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                            said to me as a child to get me to eat something I shunned:

                                                                                                                                                            toast crusts will make your hair curl --isn't that a GOOD one??

                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                            1. re: toodie jane
                                                                                                                                                              Whosyerkitty Sep 4, 2010 05:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                              Geez, I thought my family was the only one with THAT nonsense. Was your mom from Iowa?

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: toodie jane
                                                                                                                                                                Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                Now, the question that begs to be asked, did it?


                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Bill Hunt
                                                                                                                                                                  MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 11:54 AM

                                                                                                                                                                  My mom always said the crust grows hair on your chest. I always thought, "well I don't want THAT!" lol

                                                                                                                                                              2. c
                                                                                                                                                                Catherine C in NYC Aug 25, 2010 12:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                I hate the myth that you should wash chicken before you cook it. Not only does cold water seem somewhat ineffective against salmonella and the like, but studies have shown that this can actually splash bacteria all over the place (not that I have any references handy). Besides, the heat from the cooking method will kill any surface bacteria on the chicken. For some reason this one really drives me crazy--it's just so useless.

                                                                                                                                                                12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Catherine C in NYC
                                                                                                                                                                  Jack Flash Aug 25, 2010 03:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                  I rinse chicken not to ward off bacteria (obviously), but simply to physically clean it. Sometimes, there's stray bone fragments & other detritus left over from the butchering process that I just don't want in my finished product.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Jack Flash
                                                                                                                                                                    c oliver Aug 26, 2010 12:00 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    Me too. So I don't think it's a myth.

                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Catherine C in NYC
                                                                                                                                                                    dave_c Aug 26, 2010 12:16 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    There was a CH thread about washing chicken done in a UK study... but I mainly wash chicken to get rid off bag gunk.

                                                                                                                                                                    I don't know how the study came up with water splashing in a 3 foot radius. That seems like a myth to me. :-).

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: dave_c
                                                                                                                                                                      Ruth Lafler Aug 26, 2010 12:26 PM

                                                                                                                                                                      Yeah, I'm with you on washing off the "bag gunk" (which goes off a lot more quickly than the actual chicken).

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                                                                        Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                        In a serious moment here - I always bring the chicken to the grill in one Pyrex and then place it into another one, or clean the original very, very well.


                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Catherine C in NYC
                                                                                                                                                                      Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:48 PM

                                                                                                                                                                      Like the mushrooms, I always run the chicken through the dishwasher on the sani-wash cycle.


                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Bill Hunt
                                                                                                                                                                        ZenSojourner Sep 4, 2010 09:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                                        That'll work! Cleaned and cooked all in one go!

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                          Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 09:18 PM

                                                                                                                                                                          Yes. Now, I DO have to remember to take out the little basket of Jet-Dry... [Grin]


                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Bill Hunt
                                                                                                                                                                          John E. Sep 4, 2010 10:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                                          When we need to wash many pounds of potatoes we frequently do them in the dishwasher (minus detergent and Jet-Dry).

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                            Bill Hunt Sep 5, 2010 08:05 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            Yeah, that Jet-Dry has gotten me too many times. Gotta' remember to remove that.


                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                              hill food Sep 5, 2010 10:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                              a friend's mom did that with collard and dandelion greens! (minus the soap)

                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Bill Hunt
                                                                                                                                                                              JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Sep 5, 2010 12:11 AM

                                                                                                                                                                              Oh, so that's where your chicken gets such a lovely lemon note to it...

                                                                                                                                                                          2. John E. Aug 24, 2010 03:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            I have a friend that insists that the skinny asparagus are more tender than the thicker asparagus. I much prefer the thick asparagus.

                                                                                                                                                                            9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                              The Professor Aug 25, 2010 07:08 AM

                                                                                                                                                                              I think your friend is right. But in the end it's all a matter of personal preference. I like the texture of the skinny asparagus much better (as long as it's not cooked to the point of mushiness)

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: The Professor
                                                                                                                                                                                John E. Aug 25, 2010 07:53 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                I've always found the thick asparagus to be more tender. Both have the outer fiberrous skin but the thicker asparagus has more of the tender inside part. (Plus it's real easy to overcook the skinny ones).

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Ruth Lafler Aug 25, 2010 01:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                  I agree. The thinner the asparagus, the higher the ratio of skin to tender insides.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                                                                                    John E. Aug 25, 2010 04:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                    To each his own, but I guess I didn't articulate my point very well. Here is a website and quote that does a better job of it:


                                                                                                                                                                                    Thick or thin? If you've have some experience growing or cooking fresh asparagus, you probably know that this is a vegetable that breaks the rules. Thin does not mean young and tender. Thick does not mean old and tough. While thick or thin spears can be equally tasty when asparagus is very fresh, and spears that are old will be tough, woody and tasteless, regardless of how thick they are, when buying fresh asparagus, choose the thickest spears. When everything else is equal, fat asparagus is more tender than skinny asparagus. Both have firm, fibrous strands outside, but thick spears have more succulent, tender pulp inside.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                      Ruth Lafler Aug 25, 2010 05:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                      I was agreeing with you!

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                                                                                        Chemicalkinetics Aug 25, 2010 05:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                        He wants you to agree with him one more time.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                                                                                                          The Professor Aug 25, 2010 06:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                          and I'll disagree with all of you. LOL.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: The Professor
                                                                                                                                                                                            Chemicalkinetics Aug 27, 2010 07:59 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                            LOL :)

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                                                                                          John E. Aug 25, 2010 09:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                          Sorry. I didn't read it right. I thought the story/web page said the thicker the asparagus the more tender insides there are. Anyway, I'm one of those that likes the thicker asparagus and is willing to peel the bottom two inches. That way you can cook fewer spears per person.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. Aramek Aug 24, 2010 11:03 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                I searched the thread, and didn't see this one!

                                                                                                                                                                                Both my brother and my roomie went to Culinary School (yet I do all of the cooking) and my roomie very firmly believes that you can't ever wash mushrooms, that they'll soak up all the water.

                                                                                                                                                                                To me, this is a myth on par with the whole "seal in juices".

                                                                                                                                                                                Complete, and total myth. For no matter how long you soak them, too! Whether 5 seconds, or 30 minutes in the water, both show the same, negligible water gain.

                                                                                                                                                                                So, use your "brush" if you want to waste your time, I'll wash mine.

                                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Aramek
                                                                                                                                                                                  ricepad Aug 24, 2010 11:58 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                  It's way upthread...Aug 21 at 4:52 PM by TongoRad.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: ricepad
                                                                                                                                                                                    Aramek Aug 24, 2010 02:18 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                    Aww, I even did a Ctrl-F for Mushroom. :(

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Aramek
                                                                                                                                                                                    al b. darned Aug 25, 2010 12:21 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                    I saw Alton Brown dispel both of these myths on one of his shows.

                                                                                                                                                                                  3. JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 23, 2010 02:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                    I thought of two drink myths that drive me bonkers.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1) Mixing liquors will result in a worse state of inebriation than drinking one type of alcohol. There is a grain of truth in this, but it's only because if you're mixing liquors you're likely to drink a lot more.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2) Vodka should be kept in the freezer for better martinis. No, vodka should only be kept in the freezer for doing shots. Martinis and all other mixed drinks rely on the dilution of melting ice to round off the edge that the alcohol brings. If the vodka is kept in the freezer, it won't dilute, and your martini won't be sublime. Of course, one really should be using gin instead of vodka in their martinis, but that's another post entirely...

                                                                                                                                                                                    17 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                                                      Cachetes Aug 23, 2010 05:58 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                      I always thought that mixing liquors in the wrong order would make you vomit. Liquor-beer, never fear, etc. Though, likely, drinking beer first lessens one's comprehension of how much liquor they are later taking in, thus leading to aforementioned vomit. Or so I've heard...

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Cachetes
                                                                                                                                                                                        JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 23, 2010 01:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                        There is some truth that the order you consume different drinks will affect your rate of alcohol consumption. If you go in knowing that you're going to have, say, a single beer, a single glass of wine, and a single martini, it doesn't matter which order you have them. However, if you don't ration your booze and start with beers, that will set your brain to quaffing anything in front of you, no matter how strong it is. If you start with the martinis, you'll sip that slower than you would a beer and continue to sip through through the night, drinking less than someone who started with beers.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                                                          KaimukiMan Aug 24, 2010 01:29 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                          except if i start with beer, i tend to drink more of that, get full/quench my thirst, then slow down (for the most part) on subsequent drinks.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                                                            Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                            One of the contributing factors can be the degree of sugar in a particular drink. The sugars can affect one's absorption of the alcohols.


                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Cachetes
                                                                                                                                                                                            BobB Aug 25, 2010 10:59 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                            There's more rhyme than reason to those old sayings. The first one I heard was when I was living in Germany: "Wein auf bier, das trinken wir; bier auf wein, soll nicht sein." (Loosely, "Wine on top of beer, that we drink; beer on top of wine, should not be done.)

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Cachetes
                                                                                                                                                                                              hill food Sep 6, 2010 11:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              I like a friend's motto: "Liquor before beer, never fear. Beer before liquor, never fear"

                                                                                                                                                                                              just jam both feet on the accelerator (so to speak) and deal with the aftermath tomorrow in other words.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                                                              Sherri Aug 23, 2010 11:21 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                              JK, The French are adamant about not mixing grain and grape; no whiskey then wine with dinner. Brandy & soda is fine but nix the grain-based liquors.

                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm sure we've all know some of those holier-than-thou types who eschew hard liquor thinking they're "just drinking wine". Although by the time they're onto the after-dinner Cognac, they're as sloshed as somebody having martinis.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Sherri
                                                                                                                                                                                                JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 23, 2010 01:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                And French tradition explains what, exactly? The source of your alcohol doesn't matter a whit. Alcohol in beverages is always the same molecular ethanol, whether it comes from grapes, barley, rice, potatoes, apples, you name it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Sherri
                                                                                                                                                                                                  small h Aug 23, 2010 02:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  My blood isn't nearly smart enough to tell whether the alcohol entering it comes from wine or whiskey. Maybe French people have really smart blood.

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Professor Aug 23, 2010 05:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  You're right...vodka shouldn't be kept in the freezer for Martinis, only for shots.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  After all, a Martini isn't a Martini at all unless it is made with gin.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Pipenta Aug 28, 2010 07:34 AM


                                                                                                                                                                                                    One I hear all the time is "I can't drink gin because I have an allergy to juniper berries."

                                                                                                                                                                                                    To which I say, albeit more politely in person: No you don't Pavlov, you dummy. At some point when you were younger, you drank yourself stupid on some gin-based concoction and got yourself horribly sick and now you have a negative conditioned response to the smell of junipers because they are strong and distinct and volatile and they make your body remember that time you spent the night hugging the toilet like it was a long-lost friend and the next morning wishing you were gonna die. So here, champ, have a madeleine and pass me the Tanquerey!

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ruth Lafler Aug 28, 2010 10:12 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sorry, I have to disagree. I'm allergic to juniper (allergy tested by my allergist, not just supposition); I used to drink gin and tonics. I have allergic asthma and I used to wheeze when I drank gin and tonics. I never made the connection -- I'm not sure I even realized gin was made with juniper -- until someone said something and it clicked. I switched to vodka tonics and stopped wheezing. If people say they throw up because they're allergic, then you can be annoyed because throwing up is not an allergic reaction (although it may be a sensitivity) and I get annoyed when people use the term "allergic" to mean anything that makes them feel bad. But really, what skin is it off your nose -- that just means more gin for you!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                                                                                                        butterfly Sep 6, 2010 07:27 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I don't know about juniper allergies, but throwing up certainly can be one of the symptoms of a food allergy. My son is allergic to eggs and--in addition to rashes, wheezing, tingling, and itching--he would have severe stomach pains and throw up immediately after eating something that contained eggs (and still it took us forever to make the connection). Food allergies are very odd and variable, which is one of the reasons they are so underdiagnosed (and probably also why so many people with hypochondriac tendencies think they have them when they don't).

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: butterfly
                                                                                                                                                                                                          alkapal Sep 6, 2010 05:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          i'd say throwing up after gin means that you have... a "gin allergy." LOL! http://myconcordia.ciss.com.cn/myconc...

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                            hill food Sep 6, 2010 09:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I referred to it as "a touch of the cocktail flu" but then it never had anything to do with the exact imbibation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Basiorana Jan 5, 2011 02:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        My fiance and his entire paternal line are all very allergic to juniper. I know it's an actual allergy, because I had a soap made with gin that he reacted to, and he got a rash after falling on my mother's juniper bush. Juniper allergies are actually pretty common. When he consumes something with juniper, his throat closes up a little and when it reaches his stomach he becomes violently ill, as his entire intestinal track becomes inflamed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Basiorana
                                                                                                                                                                                                          hill food Jan 5, 2011 08:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          that makes sense as juniper is toxic and has to be heavily processed before even some of us can tolerate it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. al b. darned Aug 22, 2010 11:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Items made with mayonnaise, such as potato salad, cause food poisoning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      This is false for items made with commercial mayo because commercial mayo is made with pasteurized eggs that are free of Salmonella and other types of bacteria. Other ingredients such as vinegar and lemon juice provide a high acid environment, which slows or prohibits entirely the growth of these types of bacteria. Salt, another ingredient in commercial mayonnaise also acts to quell the growth of bacteria.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      OTOH, home made mayo can still kill you if you get "bad" eggs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: al b. darned
                                                                                                                                                                                                        JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 23, 2010 02:06 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Quite correct. The potatoes are by far the more likely culprit in potato salad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Becca Porter Aug 26, 2010 08:48 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          or the macaroni...

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: al b. darned
                                                                                                                                                                                                          porker Aug 23, 2010 07:29 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I don't think its the mayo thats making people sick... or even the potatoes themselves...

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: al b. darned
                                                                                                                                                                                                            GraydonCarter Aug 23, 2010 12:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            It is the chicken in chicken salad that goes bad in the heat, not the mayo. I don't know how potatoes could go bad. I suppose at a picnic, just about anything you leave out in the sun can get too warm to be safely eaten.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GraydonCarter
                                                                                                                                                                                                              jimdub Aug 23, 2010 03:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Actually Cosmic Jester, you are correct The most likely culprit is the potatoes and a little bug called bacillus cereus. B. cereus also is found on rice dishes left out too long...

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jimdub
                                                                                                                                                                                                                MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 11:46 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Not to mention that it depends on how the food was prepared. If the cooked potatoes touched a contaminated surface/utensil/hand it could make you sick. But it's not the food item itself, just what contaminated it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: al b. darned
                                                                                                                                                                                                              goodhealthgourmet Aug 23, 2010 03:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              al b darned, thanks for posting this - i knew we were forgetting a big one :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. porker Aug 22, 2010 05:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Oh yeah, another annoyance: the notion that being "natural" makes something good for you. Egad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              28 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                ZenSojourner Aug 22, 2010 08:11 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I teach an intro psych course where every semester I have at least one student (usually more) who won't believe that "natural herbal remedies" can interact badly with each other, different meds, or not be good to take while pregnant. Because they're natural, they're good for you. No matter what.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Well water's good for you too but you don't want to have to try to breathe it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chemicalkinetics Aug 22, 2010 08:17 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We call that drug-drug interaction. Many compounds can have CYP inhibition, which can then alter the plasma exposure and half life of the compound in our bodies.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    porker Aug 23, 2010 07:28 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Radon is also 100% natural...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Chemicalkinetics Aug 23, 2010 08:01 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I have a better one. Aluminum is entirely natural and it is the most abundant metal on Earth.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I have a feeling that the same people who are into natural rememdies also worry about aluminum poison.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        jgg13 Aug 24, 2010 03:01 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        yeah, but see, all of the aluminum we use was processed by man. aluminum itself would be perfectly fine to ingest, but we had to go and ruin it.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jgg13
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Chemicalkinetics Aug 24, 2010 03:08 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          You are correct. Say no to industrial farming aluminum and say yes to organic aluminum


                                                                                                                                                                                                                          For clarification.: By organic aluminum, I don't mean in scientific term, like organic complexes of aluminum. I mean "organic" as in a social/political term, as in organic cotton or organic chicken.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ruth Lafler Aug 25, 2010 01:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          As is arsenic and many other poisons. This drives me crazy -- my philosophy: if the substance is capable of affecting the working of your body (and if it isn't, why take it?), it's capable of affecting it negatively.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 09:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yeah, I just offer them some all-natural arsenic, in its original form!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            For some reason, they turn me down.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Henny Penny
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              hill food Jan 5, 2011 10:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              or rhubarb greens dressed in a nutty hemlock vinaigrette.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Terrieltr Aug 24, 2010 02:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          As is salmonella.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        4. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          thew Aug 25, 2010 06:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          or people who eat herbal remedies, and then say they wont take drugs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Mestralle Aug 27, 2010 06:41 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            There was a woman at a old employer who was convinced that asbestos in the office was making her sick. When the testing was done, it turned out that the levels on the balcony (it was converted studio space) due to naturally occuring deposits were about twice as high as those indoors (though both were within accepted guidelines).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              alkapal Aug 27, 2010 07:00 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              or you don't want to drink too much water. it can kill you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                John E. Aug 27, 2010 12:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm not attempting to stalk you but I did hear of a time when someone did die from drinking too much water. Here's the link:


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Of course, that's an extreme case.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chemicalkinetics Aug 27, 2010 12:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Oh yes, I remember this news.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    John E. Aug 27, 2010 02:45 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Radio stations are known for doing incredibly stupid stunts. This is one of the few times though where they actually killed one of their listeners.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    porker Aug 27, 2010 06:36 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think there was a case of water intoxication death with a college hazing a few years back as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      weewah Sep 13, 2010 04:10 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      That was Chico State in Ca. The hazers were drunk and the 'hazee' was given a gallon jug of water and told to drink as much of it as he could get down. He became delerious, collapsed and died soon after. The hazers didn't bother calling 911.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      alkapal Aug 27, 2010 06:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      that radio station contestant's death is how i learned of water intoxication.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Chemicalkinetics Aug 27, 2010 07:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Well, people often do irrational things. If you remember, there are/were trends like going to oxygen bars and colon irrigation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          thew Aug 28, 2010 10:04 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          and there was one report from a rave where a girl on mdma died from drinking too much water. of course in the news this was reported as death from XTC, not death from water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          (just say no to H2O)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Henny Penny Jan 5, 2011 09:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My grandmother accidentally gave my great-aunt a case of water intoxication.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Pipenta Aug 28, 2010 07:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Re Porker's comment: Oh yeah, another annoyance: the notion that being "natural" makes something good for you. Egad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Perhaps not. But being natural often makes something more delicious than the processed synthocrap that many of my young friends gobble down with great enthusiasm.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hmmmm, let me see, Cato Corner's Hooligan or Velveeta? Ashley's bittersweet hot fudge sauce or some crap in a jar from Nestlés?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'll choose natural every time!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          thew Aug 28, 2010 10:05 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          cato corners for eating as cheese. velveeta when texture and fatiness and a smooth melt are more important than the specific taste)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            porker Aug 28, 2010 02:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'll choose the tastier one...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              weewah Sep 13, 2010 04:11 AM




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Maybe not, but it often makes it more expensive.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                silkenpaw Oct 9, 2010 09:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Like botulinum or diphtheria toxins, for example. 100% natural. Very bad for you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. goodhealthgourmet Aug 21, 2010 09:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                eating at night causes weight gain. and on a related note, there's the supposed "fat-burning" power (or negative-calorie impact) of foods like grapefruit, celery, cucumber...or cabbage soup!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                decaf coffee contains no caffeine.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                fresh produce is always more nutritious than frozen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                all alcohol burns off during cooking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                eggs are bad for you...and in the same vein, eating foods high in dietary cholesterol will raise your cholesterol.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                you should eat according to the USDA Food Pyramid.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  hungryabbey Aug 25, 2010 06:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  those are all of my favourites, especially the night eating one.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I eat most of my calories after 8 pm, and cant gain a pound. Its just that usually.. the things we tend to eat at night (alcohol, chips, ice cream etc) are high calorie. Thats what can cause weight gain. Your body doesnt know what time it is, it just knows what calories you're giving it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    John E. Aug 26, 2010 08:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Eating at night causes weight gain if it's snacking in the evening after eating a full meal at suppertime after lunch and breakfast. If it's eating supper at 10pm instead of 6pm, then no, it doesn't cause weight gain. The eating at evening causing weight gain is really about unecessary snack calories.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      goodhealthgourmet Aug 26, 2010 09:12 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      you're preaching to the choir here. my point was that people typically make the overarching nonspecific statement that eating after a certain time (8 p.m. appears to be the most commonly trumpeted witching hour) leads to weight gain.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        hungryabbey Aug 27, 2010 06:16 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Right. If it were true, when you go across seas and the time changes, you'd be in serious trouble (you better tell your body "its ACTUALLY only 6 pm here.. so I can have this salad").
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Uh it drives me crazy. And its celebrities like Oprah that has made that myth so famous.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      postemotional1 Jan 23, 2011 11:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Eating at night often causes a food baby as abdominal muscles are stretched to hold the food and there is little movement during sleep to counteract the effects of late night eating.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: postemotional1
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        goodhealthgourmet Jan 31, 2011 06:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        you lost me with this one. why would abdominal muscles be "stretched to hold the food" only at night? a food baby can result from *overeating* at any time of day or night.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          onceadaylily Jan 31, 2011 06:56 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I think PostEm1 was just noting that a lack of activity at night (and usually, and importantly, a lack of hydration during the sleeping hours to aid digestion) after a large meal was *more* likely to make the food baby than it is during the day. I'm have a habit of eating late, and then leaving the dishes, and going soon to bed with a book. On the nights I eat earlier and remain a bit more active, my system feels little need to remind me of what I would look like if I ever chose to have a child. I think I would be very pretty as a pregnant woman, but looking in the mirror and knowing that the roundness is pasta . . . less pretty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. ipsedixit Aug 21, 2010 09:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Celery has negative calories

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Excess salt increases blood pressure (for those w/o blood pressure issues)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Margarine is healthier than butter

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Potato soaks up excess salt (or sugar) in soups or stews

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Salting meats (and beans) before cooking makes them tougher

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Gum remains in the stomach for 7 years

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Searing meat "seals in" juices

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      56 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        goodhealthgourmet Aug 21, 2010 09:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        ipse, you hit almost all the points i wanted to jump back on to add. there's just one missing...Coca-Cola burns a hole in your stomach lining.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          tatamagouche Aug 27, 2010 05:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Now...you're *sure* it doesn't? I drink 6-10 diet sodas a day and I'm pretty sure I'm half dead already.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: tatamagouche
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            goodhealthgourmet Aug 28, 2010 07:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            well, that much artificial sweetener may shorten your life in other ways, but it won't eat a hole in your stomach lining ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            weewah Sep 13, 2010 03:54 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Pepsi and Pop-Rocks (candy) mixed in your stomach will cause it to explode.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            ZenSojourner Aug 21, 2010 10:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            oh oh oh, I've got one!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Eating green apples will make you have periods if you're a girl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Eating a watermelon seed will make a watermelon grow in your stomach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I guess that's 2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            And another one - swallowing Pop Rocks whole will make your stomach explode!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              goodhealthgourmet Aug 21, 2010 11:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              the way we learned it when i was a kid, it was eating/swallowing Pop Rocks with *soda* that made your stomach explode :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ZenSojourner Aug 22, 2010 08:09 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hey it was a long time ago. I have trouble remembering what I had for . . . .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                what were we talking about?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                AndrewK512 Aug 27, 2010 06:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It could certainly give you a stomach ache.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ZenSojourner
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Whosyerkitty Sep 4, 2010 05:22 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That's up there with eating raw dough gives you worms. What kind they are and where they actually come from was always a mystery. However, I will admit I told my daughter this today. Not because I was afraid she'd get worms. I just didn't want her to eat the raw dough.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Whosyerkitty
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    thew Sep 4, 2010 05:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    why not tell her the truth, then?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chemicalkinetics Aug 22, 2010 08:07 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think excess salt intake increases blood pressure for anyone including healthy people. This does not mean reducing salt intake for a patient will reduce blood pressure. I think once the salt intake exceed your kidney capacity, then the blood pressure will go up. I will check on that later.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ipsedixit Aug 22, 2010 11:47 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    "I think excess salt intake increases blood pressure for anyone including healthy people."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Source? Or citation?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Even the connection between excess salt intake and people with high blood pressure issues is tenuous. There is correlation perhaps, but no causation necessarily.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    For example:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    "High dietary sodium has been adduced as a cause of hypertension and its target organ damage for millennia; yet careful observations using sophisticated techniques have revealed only a weak relationship between sodium intake/excretion and blood pressure in the general population."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    From: http://www.jacn.org/cgi/content/abstr...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Chemicalkinetics Aug 22, 2010 04:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Interesting. However, I must point out that there are many literatures which indicates a solid relationship between salt intake and hypertension (high blood pressure). Here is a 2009 article by Feng He et. al. from the Journal Hypertension. Needless to say, Hypertension is a journal focuses on high blood pressure researches. In its discussion section:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      "First, our study is the largest double-blind trial of modest salt reduction which also involves a large number of black and Asian participants. The study demonstrates that a modest reduction in salt intake, as currently recommended,10,11 causes significant and important falls in BP in all 3 ethnic groups of individuals with mildly raised BP. The results in Asian participants (94% were of South Asian origin) are of particular interest, ....."


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Also from the Journal Hypertension, Nikolaos Tzemos et. al. in 2008 suggested QT dispersion lengthen with high salt intake. In its discussion section: "The major findings of this study, which is the biggest of its kind, were that oral salt loading in young normotensive individuals was associated with reduced vascular NO bioactivity, impaired left ventricular myocardial relaxation, and increased electrocardiographic QT dispersion.... "


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      QT interval:


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        gfr1111 Aug 23, 2010 12:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thank you, Ipsedixit!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'm going to show that article to my salt-paranoid, fat-paranoid girlfriend. It's gotten to the point where she doesn't want me adding ANY salt to her food, which makes life difficult for this amateur cook. (Incidentally, my doctor is also skeptical about the relationship between salt and hypertension.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gfr1111
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Dave5440 Mar 2, 2011 06:05 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My doc told me it's not the salt per say that increases my blood pressure , but the increased blood volume that the salt causes ,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          jmckee Aug 25, 2010 10:14 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Jeffrey Steingarten has done a great deal of research on this issue; the piece is in one of his collections. The salt / BP connection is fallacious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jmckee
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            ecustard Sep 6, 2010 12:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I lost all faith (not that I had much) in anything Jeffrey Steingarten has to say when I saw him on a local television program and he didn't know how to pronounce Oscar Meyer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ecustard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              alkapal Sep 6, 2010 05:10 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              or spell it right?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ecustard Sep 10, 2010 06:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'll concede you a partial touché. But spelling isn't the same as pronunciation of a name, "Oscar Mayer," that was drummed into American heads for decades via song on both TV and radio, at least here in the northeast where Jeffrey has spent most of his life.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Well played nonetheless.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ecustard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chemicalkinetics Sep 10, 2010 06:50 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  La la la la la


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: ecustard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Tripeler Sep 6, 2010 06:12 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                So does that make him an Oscar Meyer weiner?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Tripeler
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  alkapal Sep 6, 2010 06:41 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  oscar MAYER weiner

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  poor old jeffrey must never have watched tv if he mispronounces oscar mayer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    linguafood Sep 6, 2010 09:10 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    or he is too busy eating good food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      alkapal Sep 6, 2010 05:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      for his entire life? ;-).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      everyone knows about oscar mayer. well....almost everyone.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        linguafood Sep 6, 2010 05:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        i wouldn't have noticed the misspell, but i'm a furrner. and i've never had a single oscar mayer product. not in the 10 years i've lived in the US.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          onceadaylily Sep 6, 2010 07:55 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I can't hear that name without that jingle running through my head. I suppose it's a US childhood thing, those commercials accompanied by Sesame Street, and the Electric Company. During commercial breaks I would either daydream about my crush on Spiderman, or sing along with the jingles, depending on my mood.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sometimes a hot dog is just a hot dog . . . sometimes it's an association that makes one google Freudian latency (and furrner) . . . BRB.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            alkapal Sep 7, 2010 04:48 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            the last oscar mayer product i bought was their all beef bologna, and it was horrible! i know they weren't always bad.....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            and i had the pleasure of viewing the weinermobile LIVE and in person a few years back, on pennsylvania avenue, in d.c.'s freedom plaza. "LOOK, it's the Weinermobile!!" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wienermobile

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            """Vanity license plates

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            OUR DOG
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            OH I WISH
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            LIL LINK
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            BIG BUN
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            WNR MBLE"""<<<
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            i also had a weinermobile "whistle" when i was a kid. whatever happened to that thing? maybe it's in this guy's collection: http://www.357.com/chris/wiener/whist...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              porker Sep 7, 2010 06:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We were on a bit of a roadtrip/foodtrip a few years ago (a BBQ festival in Buffalo NY and a Pizza Pilgrimage to NYC) and driving Interstate 90. Somewhere between Syracuse and Rochester I spotted it;
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              "Hey, HEY look, look, look on the highway, going the other way. Look, look, LOOK, its the Oscar Mayer Weinermobile! LOOK LOOK LOOK"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I may not remember who had the best ribs in Williamsville, nor what toppings I had at Bleeker Street Pizza, but seeing that weinermobile (it was a sunny day with scattered clouds, temps in the low 70s, grass in the median) made the trip.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The wife, not so much.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                butterfly Sep 7, 2010 06:38 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I've never eaten a single Oscar Mayer product, but had the same pavlovian burst of happiness in response to a random weinermobile siting (I-10 in Florida). I got so excited that I ran into the grassy median.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  John E. Sep 7, 2010 08:36 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Several years ago I was walking in downtown Minneapolis with a young intern (no jokes) and we saw the Weinermobile parked in front of a hotel. I burst into song, a bit louder than she would have liked, and sang the jingle. My intent was not to embarass her, that was just a benefit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: porker
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ecustard Sep 10, 2010 06:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I worked with a guy who later drove the Weinermobile and one day I got to go inside it. One of the high points of a relatively long and eventful life.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bill Hunt Sep 7, 2010 06:59 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Though at the risk of going OT, did you ever read Dave Barry's Weinermobile article? Worth it, if you have not already seen it. Link: http://www.pair-of-dice.com/luke/maze...


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      hill food Sep 7, 2010 09:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      ha! once back in my youthful indiscretion phase I was driving through KS somewhat stoned and as I drove under an overpass on I-70 a Wienermobile was passing overhead. middle of less than nowhere somewhere west of Topeka.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: ecustard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            epabella Sep 7, 2010 08:43 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "he didn't know how to pronounce Oscar Meyer"


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: epabella
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ecustard Sep 10, 2010 06:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yeah, it was absurd that he tripped up on an American icon of hot doggitry.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Curiously enough I was a regular on a TV show on the same network, The Metro Channel in NYC, when he had the "New York Eats" show with Ed Levine. It was on this show during an episode devoted to hot dog taste testing that he stumbled on Mayer while live on the air.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ecustard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 11:37 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                There was a poor man traveling by foot down a dusty road, when suddenly a genie appeared and promised to grant him three wishes. The first wish was for all the riches he'll ever want. The second was for a horse-drawn cart to carry him and his riches to his destination. He didn't know, yet, what to use his 3rd wish for. So he loaded his cart and drove on down the road. As he was driving, he was so happy at his great luck that he began to sing the first song that came to his head, "Oh I wish I was an oscar mayer weiner..." *POOF*

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MichelleRenee
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  hill food Mar 3, 2011 10:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  MichelleR: now that IS a food myth I'm fairly sure.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Karl S Aug 26, 2010 10:12 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sodium-sensitive hypertension is a minority of primary hypertension cases, on the order of 25-30%, but doctors often lazily treat every case of hypertension as sodium-sensitive.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Karl S
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            foreverhungry Aug 28, 2010 01:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            But the physiology underlying salt and hypertension is pretty clear: increase salt consumption, and that causes an increase in blood serum osmolarity. To bring the osmolarity back down within "normal" levels, one method (in addition to ion excretion) is to pump more liquids into the system. Great for bringing serum osmolarity back to normal, but now you have increased volume in the circulatory system. Increase the volume and you tend to increase blood pressure.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            It's not quite as cut and dry as that - chronic hypertension arises not from a few high sodium meals here and there. But chronically high salt intake does cause hypertension in some segments of the population, and the basic underlying mechanism is simple chemistry and physics. The details get much more complicated.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: foreverhungry
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Chemicalkinetics Aug 28, 2010 02:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Agree. As I mentioned earlier, Fei He et. al. in 2009 demonstrated a link between sodium diet to hypertension across different ethnicity groups.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The conclusion here: "...The study demonstrates that a modest reduction in salt intake, as currently recommended, causes significant and important falls in BP in all 3 ethnic groups of individuals with mildly raised BP..."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              A large segment of hypertension patients are sodium sensitive. Williams and Hollenberg stated "One large segment of the hypertensive population--approximately 60%--has in common an increased blood pressure sensitivity to salt intake. "


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hypertension is just one of the many issues with high salt diet, but that is a discussion for another day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sra. Swanky Aug 22, 2010 09:01 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The potato thing is a myth? I've been leading a misled life!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Sra. Swanky
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          goodhealthgourmet Aug 22, 2010 09:35 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          yes, it is a myth. i *know* there are still some CHers who claim it works for them, but i've yet to see evidence that it does...and scientifically it doesn't really hold water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          the only thing that REALLY corrects over-salting or too much sugar (or too much of *any* ingredient, really), is to add more of everything else to adjust the proportion.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            KaimukiMan Aug 24, 2010 01:25 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            which is exactly what adding the potatoes does. the potatoes absorb a relatively high percentage of water, and along with it some of the salt. The question is how much are you expecting the poor potato to do? If the salt box fell into the stew, too bad so sad. If it was just a little over the edge, and you add a fair amount of potato, you have a chance.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          jmckee Aug 25, 2010 10:13 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          This is almost a litany. I want to shout AMEN.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            toodie jane Aug 25, 2010 02:01 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Actually , Adele Davis wrote that salting beans or other starches before cooking lengthens the time it takes water to penetrate the surface or skin.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            From "Let's Cook It Right": "Soaking legumes is unnecessary if the dry legume is quickly rinsed under running water and dropped into rapidly boing water so slowly that the boiling does not stop. As in popping corn, the starch grains burst and break the outside covering of the legume. After the covering and outside starch grains have burst, water is absorbed rapidly and the cooking time is shortened. When all the beans or grains have been put into the water, the heat should be lowered immediately (to)...a simmering temperature to prevent the protein from becoming too tough."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "If salt, fat or molasses is added at the beginning of cooking, the cooking time is prolonged. Fat coats the outside and prevents moisture from passing readily into the legume. The acid in molasses toughens the outside covering. Salt attracts water away from [repels?]the legume rather than into it."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Also:"The trick to cooking rice or pasta and any other starchy food so that each grain or particle of it remains separate, is to drop the food so slowly into boiling liquid that boiling or simmering does not stop." I find her technique works very well with rice, white or brown.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: toodie jane
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ZenSojourner Aug 25, 2010 04:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              She may very well have written that, but that doesn't make it so.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: toodie jane
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 26, 2010 03:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I salt my beans before cooking. It just makes them more delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: toodie jane
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  alkapal Aug 27, 2010 06:59 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  acidic tomatoes also retard beans cooking -- as well as salt at the beginning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Karl S Aug 27, 2010 07:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Salt doesn't - myth that has been busted; actually, beans that are brined have a richer flavor and cook no longer. Acids do retard cooking of tough cellular walls.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Karl S
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      alkapal Aug 27, 2010 07:39 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      i didn't think that the salt myth has been busted. at least not according to the united states dry bean council:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      "Salt: best afterwards
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It is important to add salt and acids such as lemon juice or vinegar after cooking; if not, cooking time may have to be extended due to hardening of the beans. Allow around 20 ml. of salt for every 500 g. of dry legumes." http://www.beansforhealth.com/faq/BeanPreparationandRecipeTips.aspx#FAQ2no10

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      on the other hand, i see many have discussed their success in "brining" beans. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5947...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      i guess i'll have to try that brining. i do know one thing, fat will help them soften (like it does for collards)! ;-).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Becca Porter Aug 27, 2010 08:26 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        CI puts salt in their bean soaking liquid. I do too now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Karl S Aug 27, 2010 09:03 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The bean council on the salt issue is not current with the science.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Karl S Aug 27, 2010 09:06 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            What softens beans (and other tough tissue) is an alkaline substance like baking soda. BUT you don't want to use alkaline water later in the process because it's unpleasantly in taste and texture.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Karl S
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              alkapal Aug 27, 2010 06:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              fat softens them, and it *tastes* good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ps the bean council is full of beans, is that it? perhaps we should let them know?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              the role of fat in cooking ingredients is amazing -- and i learned it first-hand when making a "vegetarian" pot of collards at the same time as the traditional pot, with hog jowl. the un-fatted version took a LOT longer to cook. (i don't think i added oil, because at that time i didn't realize how important fat was!).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Pipenta Aug 28, 2010 07:22 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The Bean Council may or may not be full of beans (I always assumed that expression ascribed liveliness from caffeine via coffee), there's no way to tell from the statement. But it does seem they are full of baloney!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      "Celery has negative calories"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I think that this depends on how much chewing one must apply, to eat that celery.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Same with the mystery meat served in my high school cafeteria. The more you chewed it, the bigger it got. Finally, after 30 mins. of heavy chewing, one gave up - calories burned, and none taken in.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. onceadaylily Aug 21, 2010 05:05 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Baking soda in the refrigerator to absorb odors. Googling this food myth, I was instructed by one website that it is "better to wrap your food and clean the fridge once in a while". Gee, thanks internet, I've been meaning to call my mom.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      19 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        jameshig Aug 21, 2010 05:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        As to the baking soda, I think I saw this on mythbusters that because only the top surface area is exposed, what can be absorbed is minute.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jameshig
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          onceadaylily Aug 21, 2010 05:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I dumped half a box in the cat pan, and it did not help at all. I do admit there is a significant difference between last night's broccoli and the contents of said box.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            ZenSojourner Aug 21, 2010 10:12 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            OMGosh, I sure hope so!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Much as I dislike broccoli, its still better than kitty litter, LOL!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              With the cat box, you must feed the baking soda to the cat. That will help.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Bill Hunt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                onceadaylily Sep 5, 2010 08:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                True, but I suspect safeguarding a cat's tongue during seizure makes the cost of fresh cat litter seem paltry. She's a rescue kitty from a bad home. She bites when she's feeling *affectionate*.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It would likely be easier to feed her the leftover broccoli, and let her sulk quietly for a few hours.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Bill Hunt Sep 6, 2010 07:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  "She bites when she's feeling *affectionate*."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  You know, I understand exactly what you are saying. Our little Kermit was originally a rescue kitten, and then his foster "parents" could not keep him, so we did, as Tom Cat had just died. Poor Kermit was an odd little guy, and was never friendly with our Bulldogs, though they would have loved to play with him. Now, he did live to be just shy of 24, so I guess that all was not bad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The image on his headstone has him ready to bite someone. No baking soda for Kermit either.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bill Hunt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    onceadaylily Sep 6, 2010 07:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    She sleeps on my lap a few times out of the year, and I am almost afraid to breath when she does. The care of a being made difficult by cruel hands requires an infinite amount of love, patience, and humor, and is always worth it. I would love to have a French bulldog, but I think our Olive would certainly get the better of a dog known for both its curiosity and lack of aggression.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    She likes sushi, and shows an alarming interest in dirty martinis (or, ahem, rather the drink made from vodka and olive brine, served prettily in a glass that often serves a 'martini'), which requires vigilance on my part . . . but who leaves a martini unattended for long?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I would have loved to meet a cat named Kermit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      hill food Sep 6, 2010 09:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      sometimes I wish CH had a 'like' tab the way Facebook does.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: hill food
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        onceadaylily Sep 6, 2010 09:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        And I would *like* your profile. Whenever I've had to apologize for snapping at my boyfriend, I begin by saying, "I've uncranked my pants."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          hill food Sep 6, 2010 10:48 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: hill food
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Bill Hunt Sep 7, 2010 06:55 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hey, it almost is starting to sound like "Chemistry.com" [Even bigger grin here]


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Jack Flash Sep 7, 2010 11:18 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        It's the olive. Some cats go crazy for olives, olive wood, etc. It has an effect similar to catnip. We have an olive wood cheese board, and one of our cats goes crazy on it - licking it, rubbing himself on it, and drooling all over it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Jack Flash
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          alkapal Sep 8, 2010 07:24 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          mmm, that's appetizing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          MichelleRenee Mar 2, 2011 11:28 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I thought my cat was the only one who likes alcohol. We can't walk away from a gin and tonic in my home or my kitten will dip his little paw in and lick it off numerous times. He also likes cigar smoke. Go figure!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Is sushi okay for cats? Mine eats almost anything and goes nuts trying to get my sushi, but he's never tried it yet because a.) I'm selfish with my sushi and b.) I wasn't sure if it was healthy or not. I'd give him a piece if I knew it wouldn't hurt him.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MichelleRenee
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Snozzberry Mar 2, 2011 05:36 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            There shouldn't be a problem, as long as it's occasional, and it's not tuna. Don't know why, but non catfood tuna can cause fatty liver disease in cats.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Snozzberry
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              onceadaylily Mar 3, 2011 08:22 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Tuna can cause a vitamin E deficiency in cats (if part of a regular diet), which can cause *many* problems. The commonly dispensed knowledge is that a little bit of such every now and then shouldn't hurt her/him.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Michelle, I have acquiesced to feed my begging, yowling, flirting, pleading cat a piece of sushi on more than one occasion. Each time, she sniffs it, and then promptly whips her head up to give me a 'what the hell?' look before she haughtily struts away. And I am then left with a deconstructed bite. She gives the same treatment to sardines, oysters, and edamame. And, sometimes, chickpeas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              But, I would say that if you are only getting sushi once in a while, a bite will likely do that cat no more harm that an occasional cheeseburger does for you and I. Or pie. I would not want to be deprived of pie simply because people love me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                hill food Mar 3, 2011 10:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                a friend's cat had a twisted urinary tract (or something, it's been awhile) and her vet brother told her 'wet' food for cats isn't always the best way, at least not all the time. she thought she was being a good indulgent person. turns out they need a 'high ash' diet (whatever that means) and it's best delivered through dry. I forget the brand he recommended, but it's also one of the cheaper ones.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                but a little here and there won't hurt. and certainly fresh won't.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Chemicalkinetics Aug 21, 2010 05:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I think baking soda dos absorb odors, just not very good at it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Roarasaur Aug 21, 2010 09:40 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The best thing that aborbs odors is activated charcoal. at least when I was looking this up anwyays a year ago

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. TongoRad Aug 21, 2010 04:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Don't wash or rinse your mushrooms. Or even have them within arm's length of the sink, fer God's sake! ;) I think that one was invented by the guy selling those dopey mushroom brushes...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  31 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: TongoRad
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Michelly Aug 22, 2010 12:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I agree. I remember what mushrooms are grown in, and I take them & head for the sink.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: TongoRad
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      NE_Elaine Aug 22, 2010 05:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I took a cooking course at the neighborhood natural foods store and the woman teaching the course tried to teach us that we should brush the dirt off the mushrooms and then peel them. I actually tried it the next time I made stuffed mushrooms, but quickly abandoned the effort and ran for the colander.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: TongoRad
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        small h Aug 23, 2010 02:39 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I think that particular bit of whimsy comes from mushrooms tendency to absorb water. If you soak them in water. Which is not how I wash mushrooms (and I always wash them).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: small h
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          linguafood Aug 23, 2010 02:55 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          yah, but alton brown did a test once where he washed the shrooms in water, after having weighed them, and then weighed them afterwards. i think the absorption was below 1%.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            small h Aug 23, 2010 03:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            So they don't absorb water even if you soak them? Unless Brown just swished them around a little. I'd like to know how the mushrooms fare if they're left submerged for 10+ minutes. Just for my own information.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: small h
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              TongoRad Aug 23, 2010 03:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I don't remember all of the details, but I'm pretty sure he did a soak. I usually just rinse, myself, but I don't think it'd matter either way. My method of cooking mushrooms, more than 90% of the time, is to do it on high heat. There is a lot of water in them to begin with, and if your pan is hot enough and not overcrowded the released liquid will just steam away as it's cooking, leaving concentrated mushroomy goodness behind. And no dirt ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: TongoRad
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Becca Porter Aug 26, 2010 08:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I am also pretty sure he soaked some.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: small h
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                linguafood Aug 23, 2010 04:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I don't remember the details either, as this was a long time ago and my memory _just_ isn't what it used to be '-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I've never had to soak shrooms that long, but I've used my salad spinner for dirtier ones such as chanterelles, after swooshing them around for a while, using several cycles of water. Never was a problem.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  "I don't remember the details either, as this was a long time ago and my memory _just_ isn't what it used to be '-)"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  You must be cooking with aluminum cookware...


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bill Hunt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    linguafood Sep 5, 2010 08:47 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Well, I've certainly ingested organic materials that allegedly have memory-lapsing properties.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wait, what?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: small h
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  One night, I put my Portobellos into a nice marinade. Came back in a few moments (a few too long), only to find that they had absorbed the entire contents of the Pyrex. I could not cook that moisture out of them on the grill. Learned a lesson on some mushrooms' absorption capabilities.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bill Hunt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    small h Sep 5, 2010 07:17 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It's possible that your mushrooms were on the dry side, making them extra-spongy. I marinate portobellos before I grill them and I've never had that problem - there's always plenty of marinade left over for brushing the mushrooms while they grill. Did you use a basic oil/vinegar/herb mix, or something else? Because if it's "something else," I'd like to know so I can avoid it in the future.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: small h
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Bill Hunt Sep 5, 2010 08:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      In my case, it was a Samuel Smith's Taddy Porter marinade. I do have to admit that I did take a nip, or two, so the "control" might have been corrupted a bit.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  thew Aug 25, 2010 06:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  lets say they do absorb some water - guess what - they are already full of water - and when you start sauteing them you cook the water out - so bottom line is, worst case scenario, you saute 30 seconds longer.....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: thew
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    almansa Sep 15, 2010 02:59 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I roast about 50 lbs of mushrooms every day and I always soak them first. 5 minutes, 10 minutes, it doesn't matter. And the best part about it is the residual liquid after roasting. Right now I'm making sorbet with some.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: almansa
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      FoodFuser Sep 15, 2010 06:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We must ask: To what glory does the daily fungi output go?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: almansa
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        hill food Sep 17, 2010 05:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        yeah really almansa, you can't just post a statement like that and not follow up even if it is sort of OT

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: hill food
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          almansa Sep 18, 2010 07:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sorry, I got lost in the thread. I serve the mushrooms very simply - sometimes with basil, sometimes with a compound butter, and always with a reduction of the mushroom juices. Other juice uses: I just braised 7 oxtails in said juices. This was the sorbet base, along with an herbed port syrup and some egg whites. I've clarified the juices for a consomme; set them in a savory panna cotta; used them for a mushroom aioli w/ poached eggs and grapeseed oil; jellied them for Knox blox; certainly used them as the base for a sauce; I can't even remember all the stuff. They're just liquid gold as far as I'm concerned.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: almansa
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            hill food Sep 18, 2010 07:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            sounds great, but that's only half the answer - 50 lbs of mushrooms a day? 50?? is that a typo or is there a commercial bulk demand out there for roasted mushrooms?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I should try it, closest I've ever done are stuffed and baked.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                4. re: TongoRad
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  AndrewK512 Aug 27, 2010 06:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I just wipe down cultivated mushrooms, they barely have any dirt. But when I have wild mushrooms I always wash them. Brushing the dirt out of the gills of a chanterelle or morel is insanity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  From experience, I prefer not to wash mushrooms. It doesn't ruin them, it just means you won't spend a lot of time evaporating excess water later.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: AndrewK512
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Pipenta Aug 28, 2010 07:18 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I spend a lot of time in woods and forests for my work. I have to tell you, I'm a lot more comfortable with the dirt from the woods than any "dirt" generated by big agriculture. Methinks you're putting your scrubbing efforts to work on the wrong 'shrooms.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      alkapal Aug 28, 2010 07:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      um, why exactly does "big agriculture" have an incentive to use "bad dirt" for cultivating mushrooms? that makes no sense. it is sanitized, which your forest floor ain't.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ruth Lafler Aug 28, 2010 09:51 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        If you'd ever smelled a commercial mushroom farm you'd know. There was a big Campbell's mushroom facility (for sale now if anyone is thinking of getting into the business) on a route I travel frequently and you could smell it for a quarter of a mile away.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          John E. Aug 28, 2010 10:30 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Does it smell earthy and musty or does it have more of a manure odor?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ruth Lafler Aug 28, 2010 02:00 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Definitely a manure odor!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          At a favorite inn of ours, they have a mushroom field in their garden. They use fallen trees, and the Tennessee dirt. Not sure if they "sanitize" that dirt, but kind of think not.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            epabella Sep 10, 2010 09:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "big agriculture" have an incentive to use "bad dirt"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            i'd feel safer eating the forest floor than anything 'sanitized' by monsanto and their genetically modified ilk.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Chemicalkinetics Aug 28, 2010 07:52 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            It does not make sense to compare the dirt in a rain forest to that of modern commerical farming. The comparison should be between modern commerical farming and ancient small scale farming. People used to (some still use) animal feces for fertilizer in ancient farming.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Pipenta
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              AndrewK512 Aug 28, 2010 11:08 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm not so concerned about the quality and composition of 'dirt' as much as how wild mushrooms taste gritty and dirty when uncleaned and many farmed mushrooms don't.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: AndrewK512
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Bill Hunt Sep 4, 2010 08:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I always run mine through the dishwasher, using the sani-wash function. Takes the work out of it. Now, my dishes (in the same wash cycle) do come out with grit on them, but hey, a soft cloth takes that off nicely.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. re: TongoRad
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              celtic_tiger Sep 4, 2010 10:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              That one was clearly invented by chefs who wanted to torture their staff.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            4. Cherylptw Aug 21, 2010 04:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The only way to flavor pasta is to add salt to the cooking water...I never add salt to my pasta water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              35 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The Professor Aug 21, 2010 04:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It's not the only way to add flavor but it is a very good way. This one's not a myth (okay...maybe the "only way" part)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chemicalkinetics Aug 21, 2010 05:18 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  People will dislike you for saying that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cherylptw Aug 21, 2010 11:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The odds are that not everyone in the world likes me so I can live with it....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 22, 2010 05:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Oh, you should try it, it truly works. It's much like salting a piece of meat before cooking versus after. Just throw a tablespoon or two in once the water's boiling. You'll never look back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      haggisdragon Aug 23, 2010 11:52 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Why don't you?