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The Sporkful
The Sporkful is an award-winning podcast and blog about eating, where we discuss, debate, and obsess over the most ridiculous food-related minutiae, always seeking new and better ways to eat. Hosted by Dan Pashman and Mark Garrison, former co-workers at NPR, The Sporkful encourages everyone to eat more, eat better, and "EAT MORE BETTER!"
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Monday, July 15, 2013
SF162: Summer Special: Buns and Watermelon
If grilling is happening, is there a bun toasting imperative, or should buns be served at room temperature, a.k.a. the "temperature of life?" What are the ideal ratios of burger and dog to bun? Plus, which watermelon shape is best and why? We pull two classic episodes of The Sporkful out of the archives and pair them together for your summertime listening pleasure. Visit for related links plus videos and much more!
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Monday, July 1, 2013
SF161: Burritos
Rice or no rice? Is a burrito better when its ingredients are mixed up before being rolled in the tortilla? What's the best way to eat the end cap? And if any flour tortilla shape were possible, what would be the ideal for a burrito? Dan covers these questions and more with Slate's Matthew Yglesias, who has compared the Chipotle burrito to the iPhone. Listen to find out why. Plus, Dan infiltrates a Subway to snag some sandwich wisdom, and impart a bit of his own.
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Monday, June 17, 2013
SF160: Weird Al: The Sporkful Interview
Dan sits down with the one and only Weird Al Yankovic, the man behind "Eat It," "Fat," "My Balogna," "I Love Rocky Road," and so many other classic food-related parody songs. How much of the white stuff would be in his ideal Oreo? When he isn't rhyming with sharona, does he say balogna or baloney? And which does he prefer, the rye or the kaiser? Plus, Dan takes issue with Al's suggestion in "Eat It" that it doesn't matter whether chicken or pie is boiled or fried. Find more food fun at!
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Monday, June 3, 2013
SF159: Tequila
Like so many people, Dan was scarred by tequila at a young age, and hasn't been able to drink it for years. Now, he sets out to overcome his aversion and learn to appreciate good tequila with help from Ilana Edelstein, author of "The Patron Way." He rates each one they taste by how strongly it evokes the hot car trunk in which that fateful bottle of tequila was stored so many years ago.
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Monday, May 20, 2013
SF158: Sausage (w/Kevin Pang)
What’s the correct definition of a slider? Is a hot dog a type of sausage? Is non-alcoholic beer an oxymoron? Dan talks to The Chicago Tribune’s Kevin Pang, an eater and food writer, about issues of food language. Then Kevin lists his top ten types of sausage, and he and Dan cover optimal sausage length, girth, and consumption technique. Plus a reporter in Montana looks into the scientific merits of the five second rule.
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Monday, May 6, 2013
SF157: Guacamole (Live at Guactacular 2013)
Dan talks to Lee Frank of Nachos NY, Laura Anderson of Slate, and Chris Salgado of Chris's Awesome Guacamole about guac composition and consumption. They debate optimal chunkiness, the tomato question, proper tortilla chip dip technique, and much more. Plus Dan discusses his latest innovation for preventing chip breakage, and issues a challenge to NPR's Sandwich Monday. Taped on stage at Guactacular 2013 at the Bell House in Brooklyn.
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Monday, April 22, 2013
SF156: Sandwich Theory, Broccoli, and More
It turns out something magical can happen when Dan goes into a taping with no plan whatsoever. This episode is free association with guests Ian Chillag and Mike Danforth, producers of NPR's "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" and hosts of the NPR podcast "How To Do Everything." They cover broccoli as podcast metaphor, tortilla chips, sandwich theory, burger-to-bun ratios at the famed Billygoat Tavern, and more.
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Monday, April 8, 2013
SF155: Brown Bag Lunches
Chicago Tribune columnist Eric Zorn joins Dan to discuss strategies and techniques for bringing your own lunch to work. Eric argues that pretzels are better for a brown bag lunch than potato chips while Dan explains why the sandwich isn't as well suited to this purpose as people think. Plus they talk about what your lunch tells your coworkers about you, and a caller offers advice on dealing with large groups of friends who can't decide where to eat.
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Sunday, March 24, 2013
SF154: Peter Sagal of Wait Wait Don't Tell Me: The Sporkful Interview
Peter Sagal of NPR's Wait Wait Don't Tell Me joins Dan to discuss growing up as a fat kid, his opinions on Chicago pizza, grilling the perfect burger, how Courtney Love turned him against melted cheese, and much more.
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Monday, March 11, 2013
SF153: Ramen / The Meaning of Vegetarian
Slate Food and Drink Editor L.V. Anderson joins Dan to debate ideal ramen cooking methods, broth-to-noodle-ratio, and flavor packet usage. Plus L.V. explains what curly hair can teach you about ramen while Dan lays out The Ramen Code and introduces several new techniques for ramen preparation. Also, L.V. and a caller from Alaska discuss the proper use of the word "vegetarian".
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Monday, February 25, 2013
SF152: Hot Sauce (w/11-year-old Nathaniel Goodyear)
Dan wants to get more into hot sauce, but he's a little tentative. So he goes to the home of 11-year-old Nathaniel Goodyear, a president of The Sporkful Junior Eaters Society, to ask Nathaniel to serve as his hot sauce personal trainer. They sample several varieties and Nathaniel discusses his favorite methods for consumption, what to do when you go too far, and much more. Plus a caller needs advice on how to deal with her child's precocious eating habits.
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Monday, February 11, 2013
SF151: Eating Throughout History + Deepak Chopra on Total Pizza Awareness
What did dinosaur eggs taste like? In what shape would Jane Austen likely have had her dessert served to her? What does one of the world's leading paleontologists think of the Paleo Diet? How do you get maggots out of boiled sheep in the Gobi Dessert? How do you make ice cream on an uninhabited island in Madagascar in the summer? And how many ancient Aztecs would have had better teeth if they'd learned to eat corn by listening to The Sporkful? Dan gets answers to these questions and many more when he interviews the curators of a special food exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History entitled, "Our Global Kitchen: Food, Nature, Culture." Plus, Dan calls up Deepak Chopra for some guidance on how to get maximum pleasure from meals eaten alone, and Deepak's wisdom leads Dan t
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Monday, January 28, 2013
SF150: Burgers
"Rev" David Ciancio from Burger Conquest joins Dan for a passionate conversation that covers ideal fat-to-lean and burger-to-bun ratios, perfect patty formation, burger bite consistency vs. bite variety, cheese on the bottom, and what having a father in the FBI taught him about restaurant seating. Plus, Matt in Chicago calls in to press for new legislation regarding ice cream cone serving techniques.
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Monday, January 14, 2013
SF149: Muffins
Julia Turner from the Slate Culture Gabfest joins Dan to bemoan the cake-ification of muffindom, debate the merits of muffin tops, and take a quiz on U.S. states' official muffins. Plus secrets of muffin grilling, and a caller who needs serious help reheating a leftover meatball sub. 
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Monday, December 31, 2012
SF148: War Zone Eating
Sometimes people in the most difficult circumstances are the ones who find the most creative ways to eat well. In this episode Dan speaks with military veterans, as well as NPR reporter Quil Lawrence, about ways to make military MREs (Meals Ready to Eat) more palatable, and conducts his own experiments with MREs, forcing Quil Lawrence to taste the results. Plus, the vets share some great stories about their best war zone meals. (Please note this episode contains one use of profanity, which has been bleeped out.)
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