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Strained to find the strange: 247 jalapeños, a mutant pumpkin and space yogurt

October 10, 2006

MHCStrainer.jpgWhile ‘The Colander’ has brought you serious food news, we here at My Husband Cooks are not beyond embracing the comically odd. Given the tough times for lettuce and spinach, this morning’s edition is designed to lighten the mood and to cause a few spit takes over morning coffee.

We admit that we’re geographically biased. But not so much so that we don’t want you  Aussies and Asians doing a spit take with your beers, or want you Europeans to give the screen a good bathing in your afternoon beverage of choice. Regardless of your time zone, we hope you enjoy our effort to bring a smile to your face.

Some like it hot, some like it so hot that you wonder about them.
We love chiles. We eat them regularly in all sorts of shapes, conditions, and spots on the Scoville scale. We even wrote a short piece on how to handle chiles. However, my wife sent me this story and I did a double take. According to a wire report, Richard Lefevre ate 247 chiles at the Texas State Fair to win the world jalapeño eating title. After reading the story, I’m convinced that aside from suffering from serious chemical burns, the 62-year-old Lefevre must have a steel-lined GI track.

Dear Linus, the Great Pumpkin will be in Rhode Island this year.

I love the fall because every year news outlets run the obligatory mutant pumpkin story. They get the farmer who planted his radioactive seeds, which were enriched by genetically spliced spider bites and kryptonite, and then the farmer explains about the gallons of water a day his not-so-humble gourd consumed while it grew. What makes this special is that Ron Wallace of Rhode Island appears to have grown the largest pumkin ever. The science and the sheer mass of these titanic terrors from the pumpkin patch just amaze me.

Are those extraterrestrial cultures in your yogurt?
Finally, both my wife and I are avid couch-potato science geeks. We love science. Both of us come from families filled with science types. Unfortunately, we aren’t. Despite our lack of intimacy with the scientific method, this next story gives us hope about  the brave new world that Disney’s imaginers have been promising since I was a kid — and that world begins with “Space Yogurt”! Bacterial strains that were in space are being used to make yogurt that is now commercially available in Japan. So now, you can have yummy space yogurt.

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