Food Delivery with a Twist – Pop-Up Restaurant Parachutes Sandwiches to Customers

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There’s nothing really speacial about toasted sandwiches, but when they’re delivered via parachute, people are bound to notice. Taking full advantage of this idea is a new Melbourne business called ‘Jafflechutes’. More pop-up eatery than regular restaurant, Jafflechutes is just a bunch of guys dropping wrapped sandwiches from their friends’ balconies, to customers down below.

The concept is quite simple – the owners first announce their next planned event. You then log on to the Jafflechutes website and buy a sandwich or ‘jaffle’ of your choice. The website tells you exactly where and when you can collect your order. You reach the venue on time, to find your sandwich floating down from the skies above. Then, you enjoy the said sandwich on the street.

Adam Grant, one of the co-founders, said that Melbourne is quite ideal for Jafflechutes, because of its abundance of inner-city laneways. “We try never to do it in the same place twice – we are usually doing it from friends’ balconies above the CBD,” he said. He started the business along with friends David McDonald and Huw Parkinson, last August.

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Year of No Sugar – American Family Goes Sugar-Free for a Whole Year

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When Eve Schaub came across some disturbing information about the effects of sugar, she felt that she had to do something about it, for her family. She had read that sugar is the number one ingredient making Americans fat and sick. It’s because of sugar that one in seven Americans has metabolic syndrome, one in three is obese and the rates of diabetes and cardiovascular disease are skyrocketing. With this newfound knowledge, Eve decided to formulate a special plan for herself, her husband and her two daughters, aged 6 and 11.

Eve wanted to see how hard it would be to have her family go through an entire year avoiding foods that contain sugar of any kind. “Call me crazy, but avoiding added sugar for a year struck me as a grand adventure,” Eve said. I was curious as to what would happen. I wanted to know how hard it would be, what interesting things could happen, how my cooking and shopping would change. After continuing my research, I was convinced removing sugar would make us all healthier.”

So the Schaubs went on a complete sugar-free diet for a year. “We cut out anything with an added sweetener, be it table sugar, honey, molasses, maple syrup, agave or fruit juice,” Eve said. “We also excluded anything made with fake sugar or sugar alcohols. Unless the sweetness was attached to its original source (e.g., a piece of fruit), we didn’t eat it.” And once they started looking, they found sugar in the most amazing places: tortillas, sausages, chicken, broth, salad dressing, cold cuts, crackers, mayonnaise, bacon, bread and even baby food. “Why all of this added sugar? To make these items more palatable, add shelf life, and make packaged food production even cheaper.”

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Jet Black Char Coal Cheddar Cheese Is Made with Real Charcoal

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Manor Farm Shop in Leasingham, England, is currently selling one of the weirdest cheeses in the world – Char Coal Cheese. And true to its name, it’s actually made with real charcoal. These jet-black blocks might not look (or sound) very appetizing, but they seem to be a huge hit with cheese lovers. In fact, the shop’s staff say that people have been coming back for more ever since they introduced the bizarre delicacy

“It’s a mature cheddar but it’s completely black inside where it’s mixed with the charcoal but it tastes really creamy,” said Dan Mansfield, assistant manager at Manor Farm. “The company we get some of our cheese supplies from said they had got this new cheese in stock and it was made from charcoal so we thought we’d give it a try. I’d never heard of it before and it doesn’t look very appetizing, but it is very nice. We’ve had a sample block cut up in the shop for customers to try and so far everyone who has tried it has bought a whole block.”

The idea of combining charcoal and cheese is so unusual that I wonder how anyone thought of it in the first place. Amy Birkin from Michael Lee Fine Cheeses (the creators of charcoal cheese), said: “We toyed with the idea of making a black cheese and how we could make this look appealing.” And when they came to know of the various mining communities around them that needed support, they found their ‘black ingredient’.

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These Jet Black Tomatoes May Look Weird but They’re Great for Your Health

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The ‘Indigo Rose’ is a new, strangely-colored variety of tomato. The fruit is jet black on the outside and juicy purple-red on the inside. These colors might not sound very appealing, but black tomatoes are supposed to be very tasty, and most importantly, rich in antioxidants. Indigo Rose is a cross-breed between red and purple tomatoes, and is the latest ‘superfood’ to hit the market.

I have to admit, I never even knew that purple tomatoes exist. The modified fruit, bred by scientists in America, contain a special antioxidant called anthocyanin. Anthocyanin is responsible for fighting diseases like diabetes and obesity, and is the main pigment that lends the tomato its purple color. And when the purple tomatoes are mixed with the regular red ones, the resultant breed turns out black.

Black tomatoes were first bred by Professor Jim Myers at the University of Oregon, during a graduate study about the health benefits of tomatoes. When they discovered that purple tomatoes contained anthocyanin, which also provides color to blueberries, they decided to cross them with some wild red ones. Eventually, they came up with a black strain.

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Black Sapote – The Chocolate Pudding Fruit

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Throughout my childhood I wondered why fruits and vegetables don’t taste as good as chocolate, not knowing that one actually did: the black sapote. It’s probably the only fruit in the world that comes close to tasting like heaven. Or chocolate pudding. Same thing in my book.

The black sapote doesn’t just taste nice, it’s a dieter’s dream-come-true. Don’t let the name and delicious appearance of this fruit fool you, it is actually very low in fat. It also contains four times the vitamin C found in a single orange, and significant amounts of Calcium and Phosphorus. Interestingly, the black sapote isn’t really a sapote at all. The delicious fruit is a close relative of the persimmon, a fruit that greatly resembles a tomato. While persimmons are red, black sapotes (as the name suggests) are chocolaty dark black on the inside. The sticky texture of the fruit might put you off at first, but the unique flavor of a ripe black sapote is absolutely worth it.

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How Hot Is the World’s Hottest Chili Burger? Well, It Put Five People in the Hospital

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Would you be willing to put your body at risk for just one bite of the world’s hottest chili burger? I know I wouldn’t. That’s why I’m surprised that the XXX Hot Chili Burger is selling like crazy. You have to be over 18 to buy it from Burger Off, a British takeaway shop in Sussex. The burger measures a whopping 9.2 million on the Scoville heat scale. Just to give you an idea of how hot that is – a jalapeno measures 2,500 and the average chili is a meager 500 heat units. Even law enforcement spray scores just 5 million. The superhot burger is made with a special spicy sauce based on a Piri Piri chili concentrate. 3,000 people have attempted eating it so far, but only 59 were able to successfully finish it.

The XXX could cause so much damage to the human body that Burger Off owner Nick Gambardella is now asking customers to sign a waiver before consuming it. Five people were actually rushed to the hospital after taking a few bites of the infamous burger. One of them suffered a perforated bowel and the other four had anaphylactic shock. The local hospital even had a two-hour staff meeting about treating the chili burger’s victims. The first course of action is to put them on an adrenalin drip.

The legal disclaimer reads: ‘I, the undersigned, accept all responsibility for any effects incurred due to the consumption of the above mentioned XXX Hot Chili Burger and release Burger Off, its owner and staff from any liability’. I suppose you’ve got to be a real daredevil to eat something that requires you to sign a document like this! In fact, 55-year-old Gambardella himself is very surprised that people keep coming back to eat his burger.

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Man Says He Has Survived on Pizza Alone for 25 Years

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They say junk food can kill you. But then you get to hear stories of people who eat nothing else and are doing just fine. Like this one guy who has been eating pizza exclusively for the past 25 years. Dan, a 38-year-old woodworker from Maryland, hates veggies so much that he won’t even use them as pizza toppings. The only spice he can tolerate on his pizza is oregano.

“I’m not just talking about a slice of pizza every day,” he said in an interview. “I usually eat an entire 14” pizza, and I only eat cheese pizza. I never get sick of it. If I go to one pizza shop or another brand, it’s like eating a completely different meal.” Dan made his bizarre food choice when he was just 15 years old. That’s when he decided to go vegetarian for ‘ethical reasons’. “I still loved the taste of meat, and I still love it to this day, but due to my beliefs, I gave it up. That was about 23 years ago. I also hate vegetables.”

My guess is that Dan’s body can metabolize food like crazy. How else can a person eat just pizza (essentially bread and cheese) for years and still stay so slim? But Dan’s weight is no indicator of his health. The man suffers from type 1 diabetes and his blood sugar drops quite frequently. It gets so bad at times that he blacks out on the kitchen floor in his underwear. One time, he blacked out while driving his new car home.

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America’s Most Exclusive Restaurant Has a 5-Year Waiting List

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Damon Baehrel has what most chefs in the world would kill for – a restaurant with a five-year waiting list. The restaurant is aptly named after himself; in his own words he’s “the chef, the waiter, the grower, the forager, the gardener, the cheesemaker, the cured-meat maker,” and everything on the menu comes from his 12-acre property.

Formerly known as the Basement Bistro, the place is actually located in Baehrel’s basement and has only 12 tables. Each night, he cooks and serves a 15-course meal for 18 guests. Although he has never received professional training, Baehrel is a master of molecular gastronomy. All of his small bites are dehydrated, infused and tinctured on their way from the garden to the table.

One of his signature dishes is a palate cleanser called the ‘sumac flavored ice slush’. It involves the steeping of sumac leaves to make tea, to which he adds liquefied wild violet stems (cut from his backyard) and a dozen varieties of fresh grapes (from his garden). He freezes the mixture and serves up one spoonful for a refreshing bite.

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World’s Most Expensive Honey Costs as Much as a Small Car

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At 5,000 euros (US $6,800) per kilogram, ‘Elvish’ honey from Turkey is the most expensive in the world. The special honey is extracted from a 1,800-meter deep cave in the Saricayir valley of Artvin city, northeastern Turkey.

According to Gunay Gunduz, a local beekeeper, elvish honey is so expensive because it is naturally produced. The mineral-rich cave enhances the honey’s quality, adding to its value. Gunduz, whose family has been into beekeeping for three generations, first noticed some bees entering the cave back in 2009. That’s when he realized that it might contain honey.

“With the help of professional climbers, we entered the deep bowels of the cave and found 18 kilograms of honey plastered on its spherical walls,” he said. It was later analyzed at a French lab, confirming it to be seven-year-old, high-quality, mineral-rich honey.

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Stroganina – Raw Frozen Fish Served as a Delicacy in Northern Russia

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Stroganina is a raw frozen fish delicacy from Yakutia, in northern Russia. It is a winter dish, consisting of long, thin slices of frozen Arctic river fish such as whitefishes, white salmons, cisco or sturgeon.

The dish is served with a dip made of equal parts salt and black pepper powder. It is sometimes decorated with wild red whortleberries and greens. Some of the best stroganina is made of freshly caught fish, frozen once. The taste, according to Yakutians, is soft, fresh and frosty.

I find the concept of stroganina very similar to Japanese sashimi, except that the latter isn’t served frozen. This technique of food preparation is very unique to Russia, where the frozen ground doesn’t allow for much fresh produce. The method evolved out of necessity, because the Russians had to store their meat somewhere, so they stored it in ice and consumed it raw.

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New ChocoChicken Restaurant to Specialize in Chocolate Deep-Fried Chicken

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After the insanely popular Cronuts (Croissants + Donuts), the latest trend in food mashups is all set to hit the market. A new restaurant in California is combining two of the world’s most favorite foods – chocolate and fried chicken.

‘ChocoChicken’ is the brainchild of Adam Fleischman, founder and CEO of the patty chain Umami Burger. In his latest invention, he plunges pieces of chicken into chocolate-infused batter before frying them in hot oil.

I cannot quite imagine what this might taste like. Savory? Sweet? Somewhere in between, perhaps? According to Fleischman, it tastes like nothing you’ve eaten before. “ChocoChicken is completely different than anything else out there,” he said. “This isn’t traditional fried chicken, or even chicken just dipped in chocolate. It is a whole new style of fried chicken that you just have to taste to believe.”

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Science Teacher Eats Only McDonald’s Fast Food for 90 Days, Loses 37 Pounds

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Now this is what I call a dream diet. John Cisna, a school teacher from Iowa, ate only at McDonald’s for three whole months and managed to lose 37 pounds (16 kilograms)! He even made a short documentary on his experiences.

John’s project was inspired by the 2004 documentary film, Supersize Me. It featured an American filmmaker, Morgan Spurlock, who also ate only McDonald’s food for 30 days. At the end of that period, Spurlock reported a drastic deterioration of his physical and psychological health. Which is why John’s findings are almost unbelievable. In spite of eating for a longer period of time at the fast food chain, he reported better health and weight loss. In fact, there has been a large improvement in his blood cholesterol after the three-month period.

How could it be that two experiments, so similar to each other, reported such different results? Simple. John followed a much smarter plan that Spurlock did. John and his team of students formulated a plan that would allow him to eat fast food and still stay healthy. “I can eat any food at McDonald’s I want as long as I’m smart for the rest of the day with what I balance it out with,” he said.

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In South Korea People Pay to Watch Live Broadcasts of Other People Gorging on Food

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I’m not sure why, but some of the strangest trends seem to emerge from South Korea. The latest one is dinner porn – people watching other people stuffing themselves with food. The Korean term for it is ‘mok-bang’, which roughly translates as ‘dinner broadcast’.

The dinner porn stars of South Korea film themselves eating copious amounts of food. They also provide moaning noises and a running commentary of their meals. The entire event is live-streamed and the protagonists end up making serious money.

Mok-bang isn’t about people eating a plate or two of food. We’re talking about humongous portions here. Like this one ‘broadcast jockey’ who calls herself The Diva. Consultant by day and food-porn star by night, this beautiful glutton wolfs down two medium pizzas, or 30 fried eggs and a box of crab legs, or five packets of instant noodles in one go. One night, she ate 12 beef patties, 12 fried eggs, three servings of spicy pork kimchi soup and a salad.

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Guy Eats Out of Dumpsters for a Week to Highlight Food Waste

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Rob Greenfield, a 27-year-old adventurer from San Diego, took up a unique cause. He wanted to create awareness about the large amounts of food wasted in the U.S, so he decided to travel the country and eat out dumpsters for a week.

It’s surprising, the kind of food Greenfield gets from the trash. His refrigerator is filled with fresh fruits, vegetables and bagels worth $200. And he hasn’t paid a penny for any of it. All he does is ‘dumpster dive’ behind grocery stores, which means he shuffles through the food discarded by store workers. “Some people call it nasty,” he says. “It’s just a matter of perspective.”

Greenfield has taken dumpster-eating to a whole new level. He created 21 Gourmet Dumpster Meals to showcase “the flaws in the American food system and inspire people to be part of the solution.” Surprisingly, Greenfield does not encourage people to follow him and eat from dumpsters. “I don’t recommend dumpster living to anybody. I recommend taking proper care not to put food in the dumpsters in the first place.”

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Taiwanese Ice Cream Shop Sells Pig’s Feet and Tofu Flavored Ice Cream

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Snow King, an ice cream shop located in Taipei, capital city of Taiwan, serves more than 70 flavors of fresh, homemade ice cream. There’s nothing unusual about that, I agree. But wait till you hear what these flavors include.

The shop, in business since 1947, boasts of carrying the most unusual of ice cream flavors. Over here, you can get a lick of Sesame Oil Chicken, a dollop of Pig Knuckle, and even a scoop or two of Taiwan Beer. The family-owned business is now being run by the third generation – 33-year-old Kao Ching-feng. “At Snow King, you get the tastes that Taiwanese know,” said Kao. According to him, customers keep coming back for the local flavors and old-fashioned style. They like visiting in large groups, so they can sample a scoop each of all the flavors.

The most famous specialties at Snow King are Red Bean and Watermelon, preferred by the locals. Tourists from Japan like to try exotic flavors like Lychee and Peach, while customers from Hong Kong want Curry and Wasabi. All these unusual ice cream recipes are the brainchild of Kao’s 87-year-old grandfather. He had founded the business out of his savings from selling ice cream on the streets of Taipei. Kao says that his grandfather liked to challenge himself and spent years tweaking flavors to his satisfaction. Some of his best flavors came from trying to accommodate his older, diabetic customers. That’s how he invented with Snow King’s range of savory ice creams.

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