Rank #1: 22 - You Don’t Get Fat For the Reasons You Think
Jan 13 2017
Rank #2: 8 - Michael Pollan – Magic Mushrooms
Jun 17 2016
Rank #3: 66 – The Bizarre Fad Diet Taking the Far Right by Storm
Lately, Jordan Peterson, the Canadian psychologist known for his arch-conservative politics and views on masculinity, has been talking up the virtues of carnivorism. He’s not the only extreme right winger who has an unusual relationship with meat. In today’s episode, we talk to Kelly Weill, a Daily Beast reporter who wrote about the rise of the all-meat diet in the conservative fringe. Then, University of Colorado PhD student Alexis De Coning talks about her investigation into the disturbing history of veganism among white nationalists.
Sep 07 2018
Rank #4: 29 – This Simple Advice Completely Changed the Way I Eat
Writer and chef Samin Nosrat distills cooking into four basic elements: salt, fat, acid, heat. In this episode, she reveals secrets about using one of them to transform what you cook—and her advice changed how Maddie was tasting food for the days following. Maddie and Samin conduct a taste test, and Samin reveals how she clinched her first cooking job at Chez Panisse, and dishes on what it took to win over Alice Water. Plus, Tom reveals some of his own home cooking tricks.
Dec 29 2017
Rank #5: 34 – You Are What You Eat, Donald Trump
As President Donald Trump adapts to his new life as the most powerful leader in the country, his food choices have remained curiously stodgy. Steaks doused in ketchup, chocolate soufflé, wedges of iceberg lettuce served with creamy dressing: "He basically has the eating habits of someone who was spending lots of time and money in fine dining establishments in the early '80s and late '70s," says Slate political correspondent Jamelle Bouie, our first guest on this week’s episode. Bouie also reveals how he got into cooking as a broke college student, and has some tips on stretching out your food budget. Then Kiera talks to Civil Eats founder and editor-in-chief Naomi Starkman about how to stay optimistic in these “anxiety-producing” times.
Jun 30 2017
Rank #6: 96 – Beef Got Us Into This Mess. But Can It Also Help Reverse Global Warming?
Rancher Loren Poncia counts roughly 500 Angus beef cattle, 350 sheep, and 19 hogs among his brood at his scenic Stemple Creek Ranch in Tomales, California. And there’s something else he’s farming—something that has the potential to revolutionize agriculture as we know it. Visit Loren on his ranch, and then hear from scientists Rattan Lal, Drawdown Project executive director Jonathan Foley, and restaurant owners Anthony Myint and Karen Leibowitz to learn about how farmers and ranchers will play a crucial role in slowing climate change—and maybe even reversing it—through carbon sequestration.
Nov 01 2019
Rank #7: 12 – You’re Eating a Lie
Aug 12 2016
Rank #8: 26 - The Science of Why People Don’t Believe in Food Science
Mar 10 2017
Rank #9: 30 – Sex, Drugs, and Oysters: What It's Really Like to Work at a Fancy Restaurant
May 05 2017
Rank #10: 69 – Samin Nosrat Gets Salty
Have you ever wondered if there's a secret to salting your food to bring out its best flavor? On this episode, we catch up with chef and writer Samin Nosrat, who’s kind of an expert on the subject. Her hit cookbook, Salt Fat Acid Heat, was just turned into a riveting Netflix series. Samin tells Maddie all about making miso in Japan, and what it was like to turn her cooking advice into TV. And she schools us on how to use salt. Plus: Addicted to Lacroix sparkling water? Here’s what the wacky press statements released by the company’s founder reveal about his political vision—and the essence of the drink.
Oct 19 2018
Rank #11: 65 – What to Cook for Your Favorite Author
Author Rick Bass toured the country and made dinner for the literary giants who inspired him throughout his career. There was pistachio-encrusted salmon for the late Denis Johnson, elk burgers for Zen poet Gary Snyder, paella for short-fiction genius Lorrie Moore, and ginger ice cream sandwiches for Terry Tempest Williams. Shopping for quail with essayist David Sedaris in rural England proved awkward and anxiety-inducing. Hear Rick talk about these meals and more. Then, MoJo fellow Kari Sonde interviews author Naben Ruthnum about the complicated connotations of the word curry—and how our search for authenticity sometimes leads us astray. Episode includes the song "Deliberation" by Seth Augustus.
Aug 24 2018
Rank #12: 83 – Nobody Puts Vegetables in the Corner
If you’ve ever had trouble figuring out what to do with a bunch of vegetables, this episode is for you. Just in time for summer grilling season, Maddie talks to Abra Berens, author of the new cookbook Ruffage: a Practical Guide to Vegetables. Abra dishes on the link between how plants grow and how they taste, what to do about bland, squishy zucchini, and how to make summer veggies the centerpiece at your next barbecue.
May 17 2019
Rank #13: 67 – The Shocking Reason Why Millions of Animals Drowned in North Carolina
This episode takes listeners to eastern North Carolina to see how Hurricane Florence has walloped massive chicken and hog farms. Millions of animals have died, and waste from hog farms is seeping into local waterways. Tom talks to local water advocate Matthew Starr, whose team has been documenting submerged farms, about the worsening situation. Then, Tom catches up with retired North Carolina poultry farmer Craig Watts, who’s seen firsthand how severe storms can lay waste to the region where Florence hit—and leave farms reeling.
Sep 21 2018
Rank #14: 21 – The Secret Lives of Chefs
Dec 16 2016
Rank #15: 94 – “All the Delicious Foods Are Dying”
In the inaugural episode of Bite’s special series, “Eating in Climate Chaos,” we explore the foods climate change will hit first. Journalist Amanda Little has some warnings about the tastiest delicacies—from cherries to coffee. Delicious foods aren’t the only thing we need to worry about: We hear from a scientist who’s studying how increasing carbon dioxide levels are making plants less nutritious. But it’s not all bad news! We visit a farm in California to learn about how a tiny little berry could have huge lessons to teach us about drought.
Oct 04 2019
Rank #16: 84 – The Problem With Home-Cooked Meals
What’s not to love about a meal prepared from scratch at home? Well, a few things actually, according to Joslyn Brenton, co-author of the new book Pressure Cooker: Why Homecooking Won’t Solve Our Problems and What We Can Do About It. Brenton and her co-authors embedded with nine women to find out what it takes to feed a family today. They found that the expectation to return to the kitchen to solve the food system’s woes places an undue burden on busy parents. Tom talks to Brenton to hear more about the project. And assistant editor Yu Vongkiatkajorn makes some discoveries about what people mean when they use the word “authentic” in Yelp reviews.
May 31 2019
Rank #17: 33 – Inside Silicon Valley's Race to the Best Fake Meat
Jun 16 2017
Rank #18: 40 – She Packs Your Brussels Sprouts and Lives in Fear
Elena thought she had finally found freedom. She graduated high school and got a steady job in a vegetable factory. Then, in a matter of minutes, everything turned upside down. Mother Jones’ Becca Andrews brings us this story out of Tennessee. Then Top Chef Masters champ Traci Des Jardins tells us what she would have done with her knife skills if she hadn’t become a chef, and talks about the number one challenge facing new restaurants today.
Sep 22 2017
Rank #19: 38 – W. Kamau Bell and the Case of the Racist Skittles
Comedian W. Kamau Bell showed up at a Ku Klux Klan rally in Kentucky in 2014 fully expecting to face steely stares and racist comments. But when one of the masked Klansmen did approach Bell, it was to hand him iced tea and Skittles, the snacks Trayvon Martin purchased the night he was killed by George Zimmerman in 2012. On today’s episode, Bell tells us how he reacted to the overtly racist gesture—and about how certain foods can become cultural symbols. He also reveals the key to the most savory gumbo, and who would land an invite to his fantasy dinner party in this trying time in American history. Then: What happens to kids who can’t afford to pay for lunch at school? New Mexico Senator Michael Padilla talks about his crusade to end “school lunch shaming.”
Aug 25 2017
Rank #20: 23 - Save the Chocolate
Jan 27 2017