Food Facts & Fun

Food Facts is a listing of articles that teaches you how all types of foods, drinks and diets work.

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Why You Should Get Fired Up About Dragon Fruit

This pretty pink fruit is part of the flower of a climbing cactus. The plant likely originated in Central America but you can find the fruit almost anywhere today.

Taro Gives the Potato a Run for Its Nutritional Buck

Taro is a starchy root tuber that looks a lot like a potato, but it's rich in polyphenols, giving it a bigger bang as a healthy alternative.

Why Boudin Is Cajun Country's Most Famous Sausage

Food writer Calvin Trillin once estimated that 80 percent of boudin bought in Louisiana doesn't make it home — it's eaten right in the parking lot. Why are people so passionate about this sausage?

What's the Difference Between Burrata and Mozzarella?

These two Italian cheeses may look similar on the outside. But it's what's revealed on the inside that makes them so deliciously different.

Rambutan Is the 'Hairier' Cousin of the Lychee Fruit

Its name is a derivative of a Mayan word for "hair" and by the looks of it you can see why. But how do you eat a rambutan and what does it taste like?

What's the Difference Between Caster Sugar and Regular Sugar?

Caster sugar is a term you may have come across in a British baking book or website. But what does it mean really? And what sugar can you substitute for it?

How the Necco Wafer Has Lasted This Long

These colorful, chalk-like wafers hit the market in 1847. But they certainly aren't the most flavorful of treats. So why are they the classic candy we love to hate?

How Much Butter Is in Peanut Butter?

Aaaah ... peanut butter. For some, it's a staple food. But how much butter is there in a tablespoon of the stuff?

What's the Difference Between Kosher Salt and Table Salt?

Many recipes call for kosher salt rather than regular table salt. But does it really matter? And can you substitute table salt if that's all you have on hand?

The Particulars of a Perfect Porridge

During the winter, many Americans love a nice hot bowl of oatmeal. But people around the world eat porridge at different times of the day and in different ways. Here's how to make a perfect pot of porridge.

What's the Difference Between Key Limes and Regular Limes?

You may see a recipe for Key lime pie and wonder how important it is to use Key limes rather than regular Persian limes. What's the difference between them anyway?

Sylvester Graham Invented Graham Crackers to Curtail 'Evil' Urges

Graham crackers were invented by Presbyterian minister Sylvester Graham as part of a radical 19th century diet. His goal? To curb joy and desire.

Manischewitz: The Great History of the Not-so-great Wine

This syrupy sweet wine is synonymous with Passover and other Jewish holidays. So why is it popular with so many people outside the Jewish community as well?

How to Cut a Watermelon

Yeah, anybody can hack up a watermelon, but what's the best way to cut one into presentable, uniform slices without cutting off your fingers at the same time?

How Latkes Became Hanukkah's Favorite Food

Latkes are potato pancakes that are commonly eaten during Hanukkah. What's behind this delicious Jewish tradition?

Cream of Tartar Is a Baker's Best Friend

It's not cream. And it's not creamy. But it is handy and inexpensive, and it'll give your food 'oomph.'

How to Buy a Good Bottle of Prosecco

You might think prosecco and Champagne are the same because they both have bubbles, but you'd be wrong. So what's makes a quality prosecco?

Diamonds Are a Wine's Best Friend

If you've ever had sediment — or crystals — in the bottom of your wine glass or on a cork, you've had wine diamonds. Are they a sign of a bad bottle?

What Is Xanthan Gum, and Should You Stock It in Your Pantry?

Xanthan gum is a flavorless food thickener that's been around for decades. Is it the pantry staple that's missing for your pantry?

Without Frank's RedHot There'd Be No Buffalo Wings

You read that right. Frank's RedHot is the reason we now eat chicken wings. So what's the backstory? We'll tell you.

What's So 'Offal' About Haggis and Why's It Banned in the U.S.?

The national dish of Scotland (popular at New Year's Eve and Burns Night) is banned in America because it contains a certain outlawed ingredient. But whose idea was it to stuff a sheep's stomach bag and boil it? And what does it taste like?

Molasses: The Sticky Story of a Dark and Syrupy Sweetener

The wonderfully thick, dark syrup called molasses has been used in cooking for centuries and is still prized around the world today for its smokey sweetness.

Marzipan Is the Sweet Almond Treat You Need This Holiday

Some form of marzipan can be dated back to ancient Egypt. But today this sweet confection is as traditional a holiday treat as they get.

Is Oat Milk Really the Best Milk?

There's really no shortage when it comes to milk alternatives. But oat milk seems to stand out. Why is it so hot right now? And how do you make it?

What's So Delightful About Turkish Delight?

A favorite treat in British children's stories of the past, Turkish delight might be an unfamiliar taste to American readers. So, what is it like, and how do you make it? We get insight from the Culinary Institute of America.