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The Week's Best Long Reads, From Dining on Tadpoles to the Art of Coffee Cups

A roundup of worthy weekend reading material.

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How the US Military Helped Invent Cheetos

Wired

By the time World War II rolled around, the military was a raving cheeseaholic, consuming the dairy product by itself, on sandwiches, or as sauces for vegetables, potatoes, and pasta.

Dining Like Darwin: When Scientists Swallow Their Subjects

NPR

Though Wassersug wasn't a subject ("I would have been biased!"), he tasted the tadpoles, too. And his study supported the rule that easy-to-catch tadpoles were gross. "In truth," he says, "none of them tasted sweet and delicious." But one species of tadpole stood out: toad tadpoles. "It was one of the worst things I'd tasted," he says. "So astonishingly bitter. A teaspoon full of Tabasco sauce might get you close."

Frozen Dinner

Roads and Kingdoms

Within a few days, however, I'm counting the weeks until I will eat fresh herbs again. A few days more and I am flat out yearning for fresh basil and cilantro, to the point of daydreaming about the fresh produce aisle in the small grocery store at our final portcall in Chile.

How to Perform Ike Jime

Lucky Peach

Once the fish were rested, we removed them from the tank and placed them on a cutting board. I then delivered a blow to the top of each fish's head with an improvised "brain-spike tool" (a shortened gaff hook on the end of a wooden shaft). I aimed for a spot about two-and-a-half inches back toward the dorsal fin, directly in line with the midpoint between the eyes.

Stay in Love: Wondermade Marshmallows

Life and Thyme

The obsession intensified as they began expanding the marshmallow palette. They passed traditional flavors and went straight to the liquor cabinet. Bourbon mallows dusted with confectioner's sugar and Guinness mallows rolled in crushed pretzels became Wondermade staples.

When Did Rosé, Like, Become a Thing?

Vanity Fair

It was also three years ago that rosé started to take off in the Hamptons, where it's come to represent a lifestyle. Now known as "Hamptons Gatorade," Wölffer Estate's first rosé was produced in Long Island in 1992, in a batch of just 82 cases—not nearly enough to supply the area's Gatsby-level parties.

So You Want to Write a Food Blog

New Yorker

Quinoa is excellent for every meal because its texture is a reminder that life can't always be smooth or digestible. Every grain that slips through your fingers symbolizes a friendship that you gave up because you spent all those years dating that guitarist who could only play two Sublime songs and then left you to get a degree in marketing.

How Disposable Coffee Cup Design Became High Art

Eater

Sometimes they're inked with cheeky puns or cheerful pick-me-ups, adding fuel to the caffeine fire toward a day full of either snark or goodwill, respectively. Other times, the commitment to theme becomes so intricate that each size cup is decorated with a different related illustration. At Pelican House in Brighton, England, each of shop's five cup sizes reveals a different stage of a baby pelican hatching from its shell.

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