84 votes
Accepted

Does scouring a stainless-steel pan cause it to release metals into food?

The claim is wildly overblown TL;DR While chromium and nickel (and iron) do leach into your food from stainless steel, they do so in forms and levels which are safe, even essential. Chromium and ...
Schwern's user avatar
  • 19.7k
29 votes

Is it possible to bake a cake with a phone inside, leaving the phone intact?

The pictures are not fake. They are real photos of a phone baked into a cake, and then removed. However, the "Imagine this scenario. You drop your phone..." text is just imagination, not ...
DavePhD's user avatar
  • 107k
25 votes

Can a person submerge their hands in hot frying oil without adverse effects?

This is nothing but trickery. In this particular case, it appears that they have a liquid in there that has a much lower boiling point, is heavier than the oil, has the same appearance as the oil, ...
JasonR's user avatar
  • 9,267
22 votes

Could bread be baked in a mailbox when the temperature is 100°F (37°C)?

No. According to media reports, the woman in the picture has stated that the photo was staged, and intended to be a joke: If the story is too good to be true, it's because it is. Roberta says while ...
Schmuddi's user avatar
  • 9,508
18 votes
Accepted

Is it possible to bake a cake with a phone inside, leaving the phone intact?

It's possible, but unlikely. It's possible Cakes cook from the outside in. If you are not careful you might pull out a cake cooked outside but raw inside. This happens when the oven is too hot. What ...
Sklivvz's user avatar
  • 78.7k
17 votes
Accepted

Does pricking eggs before boiling them reduce cracking?

In Germany, it's such a well-known advice to prick eggs before boiling that there is a kitchen tool which exists only to make Eier pieksen easier: the Eierpiekser. My mother had a cheap plastic one (...
Schmuddi's user avatar
  • 9,508
13 votes
Accepted

Could bread be baked in a mailbox when the temperature is 100°F (37°C)?

No Bread is typically baked at between 350 and 475F (180 and 246C) I did a bit more research and found it's possible do do it at lower temperatures. It did take 45 minutes and the bread doesn't have ...
Comic Sans Seraphim's user avatar
13 votes

Does pricking eggs before boiling them reduce cracking?

(I endorse Schmuddi's answer but I'll keep this one for the historical background it provides.) The advice goes back more than one hundred years to a 20 January 1899 North Dakota Agricultural College, ...
DavePhD's user avatar
  • 107k
11 votes

Are new born mice an available dish in Chinese restaurants?

In my opinion it existed in the past and might still exist, but if so it is extremely difficult to find in a restaurant. According to this entry in Chinese Wikipedia: 三叫鼠,又名三吱儿,求小鼠肉嫩,故以蜜糖餵母鼠,故又叫蜜唧,...
ryhui's user avatar
  • 111
10 votes
Accepted

Is aluminum foil safe to use with food?

tl;dr While aluminum is toxic in large quantities, the risks from intake of low quantities are uncertain. However, as a precaution it is recommended to minimize intake. For that reason acidic or ...
sleske's user avatar
  • 726
9 votes
Accepted

Does cooking eggs at high temperatures oxidise more fats than low temperatures?

The "confusion" is caused by the bad wording of the abstract. Page 2 more properly says: The amount of fat extracted from the egg yolks was inversely proportional to the amount of heat ...
Ray Butterworth's user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

Was the microwave discovered by finding food cooked in a pocket?

The origin of this story seems to be a 1958 Reader's Digest article, "Percy Spencer and His Itch to Know", written by Don Murray: One day a dozen years ago [Percy Spencer] was visiting a ...
Laurel's user avatar
  • 31.6k
7 votes

Are eggs safe to consume once they reach 70 degrees celsius

This is a question that would be better handled by the experts at Seasoned Advice (I suspect it would be a duplicate.) Their food safety tag description is a fantastic resource that I commonly refer ...
Oddthinking's user avatar
  • 143k
6 votes
Accepted

Do fruits and vegetables sold in supermarkets taste worse than those grown on local farms?

Yes it is true that some fruits such as raspberries and vegetables such as spinach in supermarkets taste different, when compared to local farms and farmers markets since most varieties of fruits and ...
pericles316's user avatar
  • 22.8k
6 votes
Accepted

Does rubbing the end of a cucumber improve its taste?

Probably not this link explains the source of bitterness and how it is distributed in a cucumber: A natural organic compound called cucurbitacin is the culprit, according to Oregon State University ...
Rsf's user avatar
  • 3,012
4 votes
Accepted

Did the restaurant chain Olive Garden have warranty terms for their pots that prevent salting the cooking water?

It seems likely to be true. In particular, Starboard Value made the claim as part of an extended, savage, and heavily reported critique of the then-management of the chain, where the "no salting" bit ...
Ben Barden's user avatar
  • 3,677
4 votes

Is there formaldehyde in the glue of bamboo cutting boards? Is it dangerous?

Evidence: Formaldehyde is an industrial chemical used to make other chemicals and products including chewing gums. U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC): Formaldehyde can be released into ...
pericles316's user avatar
  • 22.8k
4 votes

Is there formaldehyde in the glue of bamboo cutting boards? Is it dangerous?

In American Woodworker Sep-Oct 1993 there is an article A Guide to Glues by Curtis Johnson "biochemist at Oregon State University". In the article he says: ...urea-formaldehyde glues, are my ...
DavePhD's user avatar
  • 107k
3 votes

How unhealthy are aluminum cooking pans?

We don't know how risky aluminum is. (Source.) In Germany, the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) wondered about cooking pans too. They wrote an article named "FAQs about aluminium in food ...
unforgettableidSupportsMonica's user avatar
3 votes

Is there any reason to tear basil instead of cutting it with a knife?

According to The Tuscan Year: Life and Food in an Italian Valley, page 73 There is a local superstition that basil must never be cut with a blade but always torn with the fingers; this precaution ...
DavePhD's user avatar
  • 107k
2 votes
Accepted

Can a person submerge their hands in hot frying oil without adverse effects?

According the video I Dipped my Hand into Boiling Hot Oil - Leidenfrost Effect? by Physics Girl on YouTube this is in fact the Leidenfrost Effect. In the video the conditions are recreated and hands ...
Evan Carroll's user avatar
  • 30.6k
1 vote

Do vacuum blenders preserve nutrients and flavour, and produce less foam?

In short: Most reviewers agree that the smoothies prepared by vacuum blenders are less frothy than those prepared by regular blenders, but they don't necessary agree about the better taste. ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 5,022

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