Joseph and Joseph's folding Rinse & Chop morphs from a cutting board into a colander for ease of cutting, rinsing, and draining your produce (and it leaves one less thing to clean up). Made of dishwasher-safe polypropylene with a non-slip rubber grip. $24 at the MoMA Store.
You can now follow The Food Section on Facebook and Twitter for updates and announcements, breaking news, special offers, and giveaways:
Become a fan of The Food Section on Facebook.
Follow The Food Section on Twitter.
Is your New Year's resolution to eat more fruit and vegetables in 2009?
The Apple a Day poster provides a way for you to track your progress (and finally find a use for those annoying little labels stuck to your fruit). Just peel the stickers from your each of your fuji and affix them to the numbered squares for some preschool-style positive reinforcement. The 18" x 23" letterpress poster is $25 at VikDesign's Etsy Shop. [via swissmiss]
Asian Dining Rules
The 92nd Street Y presents, "Asian Dining Rules," with David Chang (chef/owner, Momofoku Noodle Bar, Ssam, and Ko restaurants), Jennifer 8. Lee (New York Times reporter and author, The Fortune Cookie Chronicles), and eGullet founder Steven Shaw (author, Asian Dining Rules), moderated by Mike Colameco. The panel will discuss the history of Asian dining in the United States and will also teach guests how to order like insiders when going out to restaurants. The event will take place on Sunday, January 11th at 8:15 p.m. Tickets: $27/person.
According to Serious Eats, Juzo Itami's brilliant 1985 cult comedy "Tampopo" is being reimagined as a new film starring Brittany Murphy as a young American woman in Japan who gets dumped by her boyfriend, only to get her groove back behind the counter of a noodle shop. As Serious Eats notes, it "looks like 'Tampopo' meets 'Lost in Translation.'"
If you've never seen the original Tampopo -- a "noodle Western" interspersed with a series of satirical vignettes about food culture -- this might sound like a bizzarro "Saturday Night Live" skit (or just a bad dream). But, it's apparently for real, as this trailer for the film will attest:
Media8entertainment provides a synopsis of the forthcoming "The Ramen Girl":
"Abruptly abandoned by her boyfriend, a young American woman (Murphy) finds herself suddenly alone and adrift in Tokyo. Lost in the shuffle of a foreign culture, and seeking to console herself, Abby winds up hanging out in her neighborhood ramen shop. After observing the magical effects of the shop's ramen on the customers, Abby convinces herself that her true path in life is to become a ramen chef. Abby persuades the shop's tyrannical, temperamental Japanese master chef to teach her the art of making ramen. And although their relationship is contentious and rocky, they both discover the most important ingredient of all - that each ramen bowl must contain a universe of feeling and truly be a gift from the heart."
For a taste of the original, here's a memorable clip where the noodle master instructs the proper way to consume (and appreciate) the perfect bowl of ramen:
"If absinthe were a band, it would be Interpol, third-hand piffle masquerading as transgressive pop culture. If absinthe were sneakers, it would be a pair of laceless Chuck Taylors designed by John Varvatos for Converse. If it were facial hair, it would be the soul patch. If absinthe were a finish on kitchen and bath fixtures, it would be brushed nickel."
A recent study into the genetics of taste provides new insights into global variation in the sensitivity of humans to different flavors.
Surveying residents of Kenya and Cameroon, the researchers discovered that these African populations were more sensitive to bitter tastes than Europeans. The Kenyans and Cameroonians were observed to have a very high level of diversity in a gene called TAS2R38, which detects bitter flavors, and they were able to sense more subtle ranges when given a bitter-tasting compound to taste.
Scientists don't yet understand the reason for the difference between peoples from the two continents, but speculate that it may be linked to an evolutionary benefit that gave Africans the sensitivity to identify plants and vegetables that were beneficial to eat (but also bitter). So, why did Europeans lose this advanced sense of taste? One theory suggests it was due to the lack of genetic variation in those small numbers of Africans migrants who would became Europe's ancestors.