Category Archives: Quick Bites

Quick Bite: Chocolate

covers China’s famous terracotta army.

chocolate terracotta warriors

They each measure about 35 centimetres tall. Image by Sam Ilić, Flickr.

In Beijing, this past January, an estimated 80 tons of chocolate was used in a delicious replication of the terracotta army and the Great Wall.  The troop of 400 cocoa miniatures and the 10 metre wall was on display at the Beijing Olympic Park, and made its way from the mainland to Taipei’s National Taiwan Science Education Center in late June.

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Quick Bite: Mushrooms

can kill.

mushrooms

Some mushrooms don't like Chinese people. Image from http://www.saidaonline.com/en/news.php?go=fullnews&newsid=9621.

Several hundred mysterious and sudden cardiac arrest cases have been raising alarm in China’s Yunnan province, and scientists are pointing the finger at an enigmatic and inconspicuously murderous fungus, the Little White.   Don’t eat it.

The BBC article, here.

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Quick Bite: Saliva

lets you taste things.

Nice. Image by David Trood, The Image Bank.

Yes, yes, that’s what tastebuds do, but without saliva to dissolve food into the chemicals that those little papillae interpret and “taste,” they’re just decorative pink bumps on your tongue.

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Quick Bite: Lettuce

can alleviate menstrual pains.

lettuce leaf close up

Put these on your breasts. Image by Daisuke Morita, Photographer's Choice.

A certain shameless women’s magazine wrote recently that by “wrapping a refrigerated raw lettuce leaf around each breast until it wilts” helps with those irritating side-effects.  Try at your own discretion.

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Quick Bite: Lemons

to be nominated for the next alternative energy source!

lemons

Lemons are sour, yellow, and can zap you. Image by Southern Stock, Photodisc.

Perhaps that might be taking it too far.  However, if you stick say a nail and a penny in a lemon, you’ve made yourself a battery!  Well, there’s a more precise science to it, but that’s not really my forte.  Read more about it, here.

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Quick Bite: Popcorn

is full of people.

popcorn

If you look closely, you can kind of make out tons of tiny people. Not actually. Image from life123.com/food/cooking-tips/popcorn/how-to-make-perfect-popcorn.shtml.

In the state of Indiana, there is a town called Popcorn.  If you’ve ever tried Dale & Thomas brand popcorn, then you might be familiar with this place.  That, or you might actually be from there!  But that’s highly unlikely as there really aren’t too many people in Popcorn, Indiana.

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Quick Bite: Honey

lasts forever.

honey

This goopy stuff can outlive you. Image by Megan Fizell, Tres Jolie Studios.

Well, not forever, but a pretty long time.  Thanks to what the bees do to the chemical nature of honey, it could outlast your shelf life on the planet.

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Quick Bite: Banana Peels

can make bruises look better.

banana peel

Maybe you shouldn't throw this away so readily. Image by Tony Latham, Iconica.

Some believe that by holding banana peels over a bruise for ten to thirty minutes the colour will be drawn from it.  Apparently warts, splinters, and even headaches also fall before the incredible utility of the often overlooked banana peel.

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Quick Bite: Yams

are not sweet potatoes.

yam and sweet potato

The yam (right) is not a sweet potato (left). Image: Jennifer Baldwin

While both the sweet potato and yam flourish into tropical vines, using these two words interchangeably as many North Americans like to do is, well, wrong.  The yam (hailing from Asia and Africa) and sweet potato (an American descendant) come from entirely different families—dioscoreaceae and convulvaceae, respectively.  And even though it’s common to find orangey “yams” at the supermarket (in North America), they are merely a squishier version of the sweet potatoes sitting beside them.

Happy 2010!

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Quick Bite: Apples

were once regarded as feminine symbols, associated with Venus.

green apple halved

Apparently the core looks just like something else... From Getty Images.

While this was only true in some esoteric cults, this connection was theorized to be made because an apple cut vertically in half bears some resemblance to female genitalia.

Happy December!

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