The Real Joy of Mock Food

"Wow, this really kind of tastes like turkey.”
First Landing of Christopher Columbus

The Columbian Exchange Should Be Called The Columbian Extraction

Europeans were eager to absorb the starches and flavors pioneered by the indigenous peoples of the Western Hemisphere.
Wild rice

Wild Rice’s Refusal to Be Domesticated

The reality of wild rice defeated the best efforts of Europeans to domesticate it.
Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:John_F._Francis_(attrib)_-_Still_Life_of_Strawberries_and_Cream.jpg

The Invention of Dessert

The English word “dessert” emerged in the seventeenth century, derived from the French verb “desservir.” But the concept has changed a lot since then.
Inside a Foreign Restaurant by Utagawa Yoshikazu, 1860

Restaurants Built Modern Japan’s Identity

In the early 20th century, Japan's embrace of exotic cuisines helped strengthen its connections both to China and to the West.
An illustration of John Harvey Kellogg and an early corn flakes advertisement

The Strange Story Behind Your Breakfast Cereal

Kellogg's Corn Flakes were originally created by a doctor who believed bland food would reduce people's urge to masturbate.
An advertisement for Fry's Chocolate

How Chocolate Came to Europe

Pre-Colombian cultures valued chocolate highly as a drink, and often served it at important events. It wasn't made into a solid candy until 1847.
The Feast of Achelous by Peter Paul Rubens, circa 1615

Feasting Tips From Ancient Greece

Many of us strive to avoid talking politics at a big holiday feasts. But in Homer's Greece, feasting was all about politics.
A hand holding a sandwich

Why Do Americans Eat Three Meals a Day?

A Curious Reader asks: What’s the origin of the familiar breakfast-lunch-dinner triad?