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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, December 2, 2013
SF172: Airplane Food
As we head into holiday travel season, it's time to cover tips, strategies, and techniques for airplane and airport eating that at least make the experience a little less demoralizing, and occasionally actually delicious. Like The Sporkful on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. 
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Falafel Philosophy: The Shape, Consumption, and Meaning of Falafel
Katie Quinn of Now This News joins Dan to discuss falafel sandwichization, the problems with the pita, ideal accompaniments, and whether the ball really is the best shape. (Note that the falafel patty referenced in this episode is pictured on this page.) They also address key falafel questions, including:   What's the ideal diameter of a falafel ball? Should the Eater strive for bite variety or bite consistency when eating falafel, and why? If you have a regular falafel ball, spicy falafel ball, and roasted red pepper falafel ball, in what order should you eat them?   In the end, Dan and Katie have a revelation about the fundamental meaning of falafel.
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Monday, November 18, 2013
SF171: Eater X: The Sporkful Interview
Thanksgiving is the one day when we’re all competitive eaters, so for the annual Thanksgiving show, Dan sits down with Tim “Eater X” Janus, the second-ranked competitive eater in the world. Eater X discusses why competitive eating is a sport, what happens to his stomach after contests, how he taught himself to love hot dogs, the problem of cheating on the circuit, the economics of competitive eating as a job, and the importance of good dental care. Finally, he offers Eaters everywhere a Thanksgiving Day pep talk.
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Eater X: The Sporkful Interview
On Thanksgiving we're all competitive eaters, so who better to talk to than Tim "Eater X" Janus, the #2 competitive eater in the world? Yes, the annual Sporkful Thanksgiving show is here, and it's a doozy. Eater X discusses what happens to his stomach after a contest, why he thinks competitive eating is a sport, why he quit his job as a day trader, how they deal with cheaters on the tour, why most competitive eaters have day jobs (and how much money the top ones make), what it's like to pick up women when you're a competitive eater, and the importance of good dental care. Finally, Eater X offers a Thanksgiving pep talk to all the eaters out there, professional and otherwise. Happy Thanksgiving!
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Monday, November 4, 2013
Fish and Chips and a Magical Pan of Lard
Is it better to have one big piece of fish or several smaller ones? What's the ideal batter-to-fish ratio? And is even the fish better when eaten with your hands? Slate's June Thomas hails from northern England. She joins Dan at Brooklyn's Chip Shop to answer these questions, and to reminisce about the magical pan of lard that was so integral to her childhood. She also introduces Dan to mushy peas.
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SF170: Pasta Shapes
Slate's Julia Turner joins Dan to discuss the merits of short vs. long pastas, which shapes should be eliminated, and the best ways to get different shapes into your mouth, including the controversial question of whether short pastas are better eaten with a spoon. Get more food fun when you Like The Sporkful on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter.
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Monday, October 21, 2013
SF169: Count Chocula, Boo Berry, Franken Berry and More
Dan covers Count Chocula, Boo Berry, Franken Berry, Frute Brute and Yummy Mummy--available now only in September and October--in The Sporkful's 2013 Halloween episode. He welcomes The Wall Street Journal's Greg Bensinger, who has reported extensively on the monster cereals, as well as Eater Rachel Gonzales, who hoards them during their limited window of availability. For more food fun, Like The Sporkful on Facebook and follow Dan on Twitter.
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Burger Formation and Consumption, Cheese Placement and More
"Rev" David Ciancio has chronicled his consumption of nearly 600 burgers for his blog, Burger Conquest, and that doesn't even count those he's eaten as a private citizen. Rev joins Dan for a fast-paced and passionate conversation that covers fat-to-lean ratios, burger-to-bun ratios, perfect patty formation, the difference between sliders and mini burgers, burger bite consistency vs. bite variety, additions and fillings, going beyond beef, cheese on the bottom, and what having a father in the FBI taught Rev about restaurant seating. And so much more. Plus, Matt in Chicago calls in to press for new legislation to require ice cream purveyors to put a half-scoop of ice cream into a flat-bottomed cone before putting a whole scoop on top. Listen and share!
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Monday, October 7, 2013
SF168: Eating Alone (w/ Todd Barry)
Comic Todd Barry joins Dan to discuss strategies for dining alone, including what types of restaurants are best, where to sit (table vs. bar), chatting with servers, and the glory of lunch specials. Plus Todd takes The Sporkful Questionnaire. For more deliciousness go to
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Monday, September 23, 2013
SF167: Pen Chewing
Which is better for chewing, capped or retractable pens? What's the ideal material and circumference? What are some of the most delicious ways to masticate a writing implement? Win Rosenfeld of NowThis News guests for the first ever Sporkful that does not involve digestion. Find more deliciousness at
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Monday, September 9, 2013
SF166: Falafel Philosophy
Katie Quinn of NowThis News joins Dan to discuss falafel sandwichization, ideal accompaniments, and whether the ball really is the best shape. In the end, they have a revelation about the fundamental meaning of falafel.
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Monday, August 26, 2013
SF165: The Existential Nature of Soup
Dan mediates a debate between two philosophy professors who are engaged to be married, and who are having an argument about whether a dish the husband-to-be makes qualifies as soup. Then Dan takes a call from a Canadian listener railing against ice cream cake. More at
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Monday, August 12, 2013
SF164: Cooking in a Dishwasher
(Watch the video of Dan's crazy dishwasher cooking experiments here.) Dishwasher salmon has been out there for a while, but Dan sets out to take dishwasher cooking to a whole other level, by making everything from lobster to Korean beef to poached pears. He gets help from Lisa Casali, who wrote an entire book on the subject, and Liza De Guia of Food Curated, who comes over to help Dan experiment. In the end they decide whether this is just a gimmick, or a great way to cook.
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Monday, July 29, 2013
SF163: Pizza Legend Patsy Grimaldi: The Sporkful Interview
81-year-old Patsy Grimaldi may be the last person making pizza today who trained under someone who trained at Lombardi's--the first pizzeria in American history. Dan sits down with Patsy and his wife Carol to discuss slice folding technique, the art and science of using a coal oven, what she taught him about pizza, and the scourge of pineapple pizza, along with several other trends Patsy deems "ridiculous." Plus Dan responds to emails and phone calls from listeners. Find links from the show and more at
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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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