Edible Innovations

From the deceptive simplicity of bread to the fascinating world of molecular gastronomy, learn all about the food you eat with these articles about edible innovations.

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There's a peculiar type of honey, called mad honey, that contains a neurotoxin. In small doses, it can cause hallucinations, but in large amounts, the substance can be highly poisonous. Over the centuries, people have used it as a medicinal drug, a recreational drug and even a bioweapon.

By Marie Look

We're talking the science of aging beer with the brewmasters of Sweetwater Brewery.

"Candy Queen" Jackie Sorkin took her love of sugary sweet candy and turned it into a crazy, colorful world of art and illusions.


Food spoilage is an urgent issue for the millions of people with unreliable electricity — or no electricity at all. A supercool $35 fridge could change that common scenario.

By Tracy Staedter

It's been part of people's diets around the world for centuries, but has recently become a health-food staple. Are you one of the people who seek a little culture every day?

By Laura Castellano

Even in its simplest form, chocolate is a pleasure to eat. But these days, there are some truly quirky chocolate products out there that’ll blow your mind – and your taste buds. Click your way through this chocolaty gallery (and try not to drool too much).

By Rachel Frank

Energy drinks are everywhere, but how exactly are they supposed to give you energy? What's really in them, and are they safe? Find out.

By Stephanie Watson


If you had the perfect cure for world hunger, wouldn't you want to share it? A group called the Breatharians claims to have the answer: Stop eating.

By Katie Lambert

Tea, the second-most consumed beverage in the world, has its own culture and customs. Learn more about different kinds of tea and how the process of preparing tea works.

By John Fuller

Spam has been inspiring obsession and revulsion since the Great Depression. What exactly makes people so passionate about it?

By Ed Grabianowski

Some cooks like to pound their steak with a mallet. Other adventurous souls have tenderized meat with explosives. Why does a pineapple work just as well?

By Tom Scheve


Cotton candy is a fluffy mass of sugary delight and a popular carnival treat that's been exciting children for more than a century. But how does cotton candy get its fine, downy texture?

By Christine Venzon

Whether it's providing us with a quick dose of energy or satisfying a sweet tooth, we love sugar. But is sugar a good fuel for us and our cars?

By Jacob Silverman

For the backyard chef and the experienced foodie alike, nothing means luxury like a fine steak, with melt-in-your-mouth tenderness and rich flavor.

By Eleanor Duse

As you sink your teeth into a juicy hamburger, could you be consuming meat that came from cloned livestock? Will those condiments taste just as good on your genetically duplicated dinner?

By Julia Layton & Cristen Conger


When absinthe was banned in many countries in the early 1900s, it had really fallen out of favor. How does absinthe affect those who drink it?

By Julia Layton

Unless you're in a particularly remote area, you can't go far in most developed countries without finding a fast-food restaurant. Learn how fast-food restaurants came to be and why they're so popular.

By Tracy V. Wilson

What if we could enjoy all of the pleasurable effects of alcohol, without having to worry about the harmful side effects? Learn about synthehol and other alternatives to alcohol.

By Stephanie Watson

As you surf the Web, your mind is distracted by the thought of warm cookies floating in cold milk. Will this craving ever subside, or do you need chocolaty satisfaction ASAP?

By Cristen Conger


Will slipping some java into a child's sippy cup result in an undersized tyke? An old wives' tale would have you believe so. Does coffee affect your measurements -- or does it just help you stay awake?

By Michael Franco

Are you hungry for some nitro-scrambled egg-and-bacon ice cream? Did you want a little fried mayo on that sandwich? Molecular gastronomy has cast cooking in a new light and created some seemingly bizarre, but shockingly delicious dishes.

By William Harris

From Beaujolais to Bordeaux, Madeira to Merlot and Sancerre to Shiraz, wine can complement almost any food. And, one glass of red wine daily may be a heart-healthy habit. Learn how wine is made, from grapes to glass!

By Craig Freudenrich, Ph.D.

In an age of health-conscious consumers, low-carb diets and bottled water, one snack has stood the test of time. Twinkies are an icon of junk-food snacks and guilty pleasures, nutritionally worthless yet irresistibly yummy.

By Ed Grabianowski


Water and vitamins help keep us alive and healthy. So if you put the vitamins in the water, wouldn't you be even healthier? Check out Glaceau's Vitaminwater and see if it really does what it claims to do.

By John Fuller

Crunchy crust, soft, spongy middle -- there's something about fresh-baked bread. Have you ever thought about bread as a technology? Learn about the biochemical reactions that make bread taste so good!

By Marshall Brain