Building an out-of-this-world menu for Mars
August 3rd, 2012
04:30 PM ET
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As the rover Curiosity makes its journey to Mars, food scientists on Earth are exploring whether astronauts with a green thumb will be the key to feeding at least a six-person crew on a future mission to the Red Planet.

"The big challenge is having a food system that is going to work for that long-duration mission," says Michele Perchonok, NASA's Advanced Food Technology Project Scientist.

A “Martian greenhouse” is one of the food systems being considered for a manned mission to Mars, which isn't scheduled until the 2030s.

It takes six months just to get to Mars and the team in charge of food, including Perchonok, is responsible for feeding the crew every day for two and a half years.

“If we didn't go with the plant-based bioregenerative food system, and all we did was provide packaged food for a 1,000-day mission for a crew of six, it’s about 20,000 pounds of food plus packaging," she says.

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Filed under: Gardening • Make • Travel

Let the games begin ... at the restaurant
August 3rd, 2012
01:00 PM ET
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Kate Krader (@kkrader on Twitter) is Food & Wine's restaurant editor. When she tells us where to find our culinary heart's desire, we listen up.

It was an all-Chinese women’s final this year in Olympic table tennis, and Xiaoxia Li took the gold. (In fact, China has won 22 of the 26 gold medals since table tennis was introduced as an Olympic sport in 1988.)

Whether you’re feeling inspired by China’s dominating Olympic performance or just want to get away from a long, boring conversation at the dinner table, here are several spots where you can eat great crispy prawns and improve your skills at table tennis or other games, like shuffleboard.

And for those with an eye toward the 2016 Olympics, here's some inspiration: The US has not a single table tennis medal to its name.

Box lunch: Ketchup cup conundrums and camel riders
August 3rd, 2012
12:00 PM ET
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Sink your teeth into this week's top stories from around the globe.

  • Are you sitting down? Ok, good. ...We have some bad news: You've been using those paper ketchup cups wrong your entire life. - Lifehacker

  • How to make a Chick-Fil-A sandwich at home. - Serious Eats

  • That burger may be delicious now, but the Center for Investigative Reporting wants you to consider the hidden costs for the future. - Mother Jones


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Filed under: Box Lunch • News

Dining at the Olympic Village
August 3rd, 2012
10:00 AM ET
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Swimming superstar Michael Phelps once claimed he scoffed up to 12,000 calories a day. Usain Bolt's big sprint rival Yohan Blake says he chomps 16 ripe bananas every 24 hours.

A tiny Japanese athlete easily tucked away 50 pieces of sushi after training, while another marathon runner gobbled plates of raw mince.

Or how about the weightlifter who drinks the first milk of a cow that has just given birth?

With extreme eating habits like these, it may be some surprise to learn that within the Olympic Village there lurks a culinary trap that can potentially tip athletes over the fine line between success and failure at London 2012.

Competitors spend years honing their bodies to perfection, scrupulously eating the right foods, avoiding the wrong ones ... and then?

They encounter the Olympic Dining Hall.

Read the full story - "Food, glorious food: Olympic athletes' extreme eating habits"

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Filed under: Events • News • Olympics • Sports

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