Every week, I compile a short list of food items on the Internet that made me hungry, curious, confused or all of the above.
Indian spice with a future in food safety
A key ingredient in Indian cuisine could become a valuable weapon in the fight against cross-contamination. A research team at Southern Illinois University Carbondale is looking at turmeric for making food-safe, antibacterial surfaces for food processing, preparation and packaging, according to the university’s website. Turmeric’s main component, curcumin, is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory but also has antimicrobial qualities, the researchers found.
Nashville hot chicken cures wintertime blues
For a quick-yet-fascinating look into a family business that serves a searing rendition of Nashville hot chicken, check out this video interview with Dolly Ingram of Bolton’s Spicy Chicken & Fish. Part of the Southern Foodways Alliance’s Nashville Eats oral history project, the interview delves into why some really do like it hot. “It’s just an awesome taste,” Ingram says. “Some people like it real real hot where you lose your composure…if you have any sinus problems, you eat a piece of that and you’re cured.”
Green tea’s dark past
While it’s not the most craveable (or caffeinated) beverage out there, green tea has long enjoyed a reputation as being completely good for you. Strangely enough, that wasn’t always the case. NPR reports that just over a century ago, green tea was considered by Victorians to be “a stomach-churning, nerve-jangling threat to health.” A lot of that bad press was a result of unscrupulous tea dealers in China and England bulking up their supply with iron filings(!), leaves from other plants and paint.