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Out of the Blue

About a month ago I wrote about our visit to a TacoMac in Atlanta to try their ominously named "death" wings, which, while not nearly as fatal as the name implies, were certainly the spiciest I've ever eaten. Yesterday I came across a bottle of Stubb's Wicked Chicken Wing Sauce that I picked up somewhere along the way, but had never tried, so I used it to make a batch of wings on the man-stove. It turns out the "wicked" part is not understated, as these had a flavor quite reminiscent of those aforementioned death wings, and might even be a touch hotter. I find this surprising, as this seems a quantum leap past the level of spiciness that the typical person is willing to eat, and it seems odd to find such a product on a store shelf without being labeled to indicate just what you are getting into by eating them; something like "death," or perhaps a skull and crossbones. I'm working on a new scheme for naming foods based on their spiciness, and I think these qualify for the most extreme level, which is "weapons-grade."

Hey, today marks this year's return of one of the most violent things you'll see on television. Of course I speak of the Giants/Eagles game. On a much more family-friendly note, Boardwalk Empire also returns.

Violent Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez and Acleacius.
Play: Vector Stunt.
Links: Hand-Bound Oblivion Book of the Day.
Stories: X-ray reveals hidden Goya painting. Thanks TDW Geeks.
Pope Beer Commemorates State Visit to Germany. Thanks brother19.
Rent-A-Guinea Pig Service Takes Off in Switzerland. Thanks brother19.
Science: Scientists Disarm AIDS Virus’ Attack on Immune System. Thanks Slashdot.
Images: I Can’t Believe It’s Not Midi-chlorians.
Media: Splinter Cell: Lightbulb Assassin.
Conan O'Brien's Gears of War 3 Sketch.
Party FAILS. Don't drink and be stupid.
The Funnies: Chuck & Beans. Thanks TDW Geeks.
Evolution of a coffee addict. Thanks TDW Geeks.

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38 Replies. 2 pages. Viewing page 1.
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38. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 22:00 Beamer
 
Sepharo wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 18:55:
Ah leave it to some Wikipedian to describe in one long sentence what I was pondering:

"While some point to the small towns and agricultural communities in Kansas, Iowa, the Dakotas, and Nebraska of the Great Plains as representative of traditional Midwestern lifestyles and values, others assert that the declining Rust Belt cities of the Great Lakes – with their histories of 19th- and early-20th-century immigration, manufacturing base, and strong Catholic influence – are more representative of the Midwestern experience."

Eh. When you grow up in the Northeast those are both the same.
Telling that to people around here is massively entertaining, too, haha. The northern snob stereotype is entirely true.
 
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Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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37. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 21:15 Overon
 
DNForever wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 20:29:
If you disagree, give a better definition for life and for food.

What are you a fuckin teacher?
No but I play one on Bluesnews.
 
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36. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 20:29 DNForever
 
If you disagree, give a better definition for life and for food.

What are you a fuckin teacher?
 
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35. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 18:55 Sepharo
 
Ah leave it to some Wikipedian to describe in one long sentence what I was pondering:

"While some point to the small towns and agricultural communities in Kansas, Iowa, the Dakotas, and Nebraska of the Great Plains as representative of traditional Midwestern lifestyles and values, others assert that the declining Rust Belt cities of the Great Lakes – with their histories of 19th- and early-20th-century immigration, manufacturing base, and strong Catholic influence – are more representative of the Midwestern experience."
 
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34. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 18:52 jdreyer
 
Bodolza wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 13:17:
jdreyer wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 06:41:
The fact that most spicy food comes from hot climes speaks to the fact that the spices were used to kill bacteria to prevent food-borne diseases.

I think it's more likely that there are spicy foods in hot climates because chiles primarily grow in hot climates.

I'm sure it's at least a combination, but chilies are a new world plant, and didn't exist in the Philippines, Thailand, India, or any other non American country until they started being brought back and cultivated in the 1500s. Since they can be easily grown in the summer in temperate climes and dried and used for years afterward, there is nothing preventing them from having been incorporated into French, German, Russian, or any other northern cuisine, but they weren't. The north has much less problems with food borne illness than tropical climes, so I think that is one of several motivating factors.
 
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"Microsoft is the absent minded parent of PC gaming" - Verno
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33. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 18:29 Beamer
 
Sepharo wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 18:25:
The problem isn't the midwest, it's wherever you live apparently. Are you out in the sticks?

Downtown in a city of 300k.
So yes.
 
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Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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32. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 18:26 Overon
 
Beamer wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 15:23:
Overon wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 15:04:
Beamer wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 13:24:
Most people enjoy food with a little bit of heat. The thing is, you grow accustomed to heat. It ends up being a sliding scale. What is too hot for most of you is mild to people that grew up in areas full of spicy foods.


I will say, though, that moving to the midwest has ruined spicy foods for me. My city is less than 2% asian and hispanic each. Net result: no one here has a clue how to use any kind of spice beyond dried basil. It's kind of pathetic. Everything restaurant serves bland, tasteless food. I'm not talking lack of heat, I'm talking overall lack of flavor.
God I hate living in the midwest...
I'm pretty sure that in the midwest you can buy what they have in the east, various spices.

Yes, you can buy the spices to cook for yourself.
You cannot find a restaurant that is aware of what anything is to cook for you.
I rarely have time to cook for myself and always find it far less satisfying than eating out or picking something up.
I see you got me there. Or if you go out with someone for which carrying a pocket book is not socially taboo, you can put some spices into it and when it's time to eat you take them out and sprinkle it on your food in the restaurant.
 
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31. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 18:25 Sepharo
 
Michigan is considered midwest and south east Michigan / Metro-Detroit is a great melting pot.

Dearborn has the highest concentration of middle-easterners outside of the middle-east. We have plenty of Mexicans and they have their own "Mexican Town" in Detroit with great restaurants. I myself live in Troy which is very asian (check the 2010 census). My apartment complex (and unfortunately my closets) smell like curry and good cooking throughout the day. I eat great Thai food once a week. I could ramble on some more about the Polish and Greek communities but I think you get the picture.

The problem isn't the midwest, it's wherever you live apparently. Are you out in the sticks?
 
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30. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 15:23 Beamer
 
Overon wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 15:04:
Beamer wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 13:24:
Most people enjoy food with a little bit of heat. The thing is, you grow accustomed to heat. It ends up being a sliding scale. What is too hot for most of you is mild to people that grew up in areas full of spicy foods.


I will say, though, that moving to the midwest has ruined spicy foods for me. My city is less than 2% asian and hispanic each. Net result: no one here has a clue how to use any kind of spice beyond dried basil. It's kind of pathetic. Everything restaurant serves bland, tasteless food. I'm not talking lack of heat, I'm talking overall lack of flavor.
God I hate living in the midwest...
I'm pretty sure that in the midwest you can buy what they have in the east, various spices.

Yes, you can buy the spices to cook for yourself.
You cannot find a restaurant that is aware of what anything is to cook for you.
I rarely have time to cook for myself and always find it far less satisfying than eating out or picking something up.
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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29. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 15:04 Overon
 
Beamer wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 13:24:
Most people enjoy food with a little bit of heat. The thing is, you grow accustomed to heat. It ends up being a sliding scale. What is too hot for most of you is mild to people that grew up in areas full of spicy foods.


I will say, though, that moving to the midwest has ruined spicy foods for me. My city is less than 2% asian and hispanic each. Net result: no one here has a clue how to use any kind of spice beyond dried basil. It's kind of pathetic. Everything restaurant serves bland, tasteless food. I'm not talking lack of heat, I'm talking overall lack of flavor.
God I hate living in the midwest...
I'm pretty sure that in the midwest you can buy what they have in the east, various spices.
 
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28. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 13:24 Beamer
 
Most people enjoy food with a little bit of heat. The thing is, you grow accustomed to heat. It ends up being a sliding scale. What is too hot for most of you is mild to people that grew up in areas full of spicy foods.


I will say, though, that moving to the midwest has ruined spicy foods for me. My city is less than 2% asian and hispanic each. Net result: no one here has a clue how to use any kind of spice beyond dried basil. It's kind of pathetic. Everything restaurant serves bland, tasteless food. I'm not talking lack of heat, I'm talking overall lack of flavor.
God I hate living in the midwest...
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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27. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 13:17 Bodolza
 
jdreyer wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 06:41:
The fact that most spicy food comes from hot climes speaks to the fact that the spices were used to kill bacteria to prevent food-borne diseases.

I think it's more likely that there are spicy foods in hot climates because chiles primarily grow in hot climates.
 
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26. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 08:41 Overon
 
kanniballl wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 07:50:
Overon wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 07:01:
Using chemicals is not not food? Food IS a chemical. Everything physical you see, feel, taste, hear, and smell is made up of chemicals. Life is chemistry and chemistry is all chemicals.

Yeh, ignoring the whole "life is just a series of chemical interactions" and "all food is just a mixture of chemicals"...


Where does anyone say that life is just a series of chemical interactions? Nice strawman argument that oversimplifies the complexity of the chemistry. The ability to grow, change, and reproduce, is also an essential conditions of life. And guess, what, everything in my list involves chemistry and is defined by it. You simply can't ignore this basic fact: there is no life without chemistry. This is its basic essential feature. So whatever else you add to the definition of what makes life, you can't omit chemistry.
And food is just a bunch of chemicals. But of course it's more complicated than that simple sentece. Of course we can't consume every chemcial in equal amounts, because our chemistry does not allow it. If you disagree, give a better definition for life and for food.
 
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25. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 07:50 kanniballl
 
Overon wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 07:01:
Using chemicals is not not food? Food IS a chemical. Everything physical you see, feel, taste, hear, and smell is made up of chemicals. Life is chemistry and chemistry is all chemicals.

Yeh, ignoring the whole "life is just a series of chemical interactions" and "all food is just a mixture of chemicals"...

Cooking is just chemistry, only relying on complex compounds and mixtures as your basic input and rarely any basic compounds (save water and salt). Applying heat, state changes, biochemical changes, pH, etc.

But I can see it from both sides of the fence.

On one hand, if you're having a cooking contest or talking about a high-end chef... should you really applaud them for using MSG or artificial coloring/flavoring? If it's a contest or whatever, it's kind of cheap. Personally I'd give better credit to someone using ordinary food and taking it from there than someone that uses a bottle of SuperFlavorEnhancer2000. Or in this case, using peppers instead of "the essence of spiciness in a bottle."

On the other hand, it's still an edible substance. When most people want to add a little bit of saltiness to their dinner, they just add a little bit of pure salt (NaCl). They typically don't say "hmm, what food is naturally salty... I'll add that to the broth."
 
"Space. It seems to go on and on forever. But then you get to the end and a gorilla starts throwing barrels at you."
-Fry, Futurama
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24. removed Sep 26, 2011, 07:28 dsgwe
 
* REMOVED *
This comment was deleted on Sep 26, 2011, 08:02.
 
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23. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 07:01 Overon
 
Creston wrote on Sep 25, 2011, 22:38:
Overon wrote on Sep 25, 2011, 14:17:
Other than male macho posturing, I never understood why (mostly) men love to eat spicy stuff like this. The spiciness literally overwhelms every other flavor and, if it's spicy enough, even texture. It's like an analgesics that Dentist use, but instead of feeling nothing, you feel nothing else but fire.

I don't even understand why there is this market for trying to one up each other on the spiciness in various products. The basic science behind this is, the more capsaicin it has, the hotter it is. So you it's easy to one up your competition, all the way the point where your sauce is 100% capsaicin and you won, you got the hottest sauce on the planet. Not much of a challenge really. However, I don't think that's legal to sell in a food product because it can hurt people pretty bad.

You can buy bottles of capsaicin pretty easily, though they do all mention that they are a food additive, not a sauce. (ie, you add a few drops to your meal, not a squirt.)

I always get annoyed when the Man vs Food guy takes on a spicy/hot challenge where the chef just uses capsaicin. That's just cheating; it's not using food, it's basically using chemicals. He might as well use battery acid.

Creston
Using chemicals is not not food? Food IS a chemical. Everything physical you see, feel, taste, hear, and smell is made up of chemicals. Life is chemistry and chemistry is all chemicals.
 
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22. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 06:41 jdreyer
 
The fact that most spicy food comes from hot climes speaks to the fact that the spices were used to kill bacteria to prevent food-borne diseases. Although chili peppers are decent at this, garlic and onion are much better. Funny thing though, chilies are almost always used in conjunction with garlic and onion.  
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21. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 05:51 hoolaparara
 
zirik wrote on Sep 26, 2011, 02:36:
space captain wrote on Sep 25, 2011, 16:00:
the custom of eating spicy foods is derived from the hot/tropical regions various cultures because eating spicy foods makes you perspire which cools the body down

you clearly have never been to hot/tropical regions where you dont need to eat spicy food to sweat. the high humidity will be enough to make your skin feel like wet sponge. and it wont cool your body down since sweat simply builds up and does not evaporate.

I agree on the tropics.

I was under the impression spicy food was invented to cover up for rotten meat.
 
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20. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 26, 2011, 02:36 zirik
 
space captain wrote on Sep 25, 2011, 16:00:
the custom of eating spicy foods is derived from the hot/tropical regions various cultures because eating spicy foods makes you perspire which cools the body down

you clearly have never been to hot/tropical regions where you dont need to eat spicy food to sweat. the high humidity will be enough to make your skin feel like wet sponge. and it wont cool your body down since sweat simply builds up and does not evaporate.
 
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19. Re: Out of the Blue Sep 25, 2011, 22:38 Creston
 
Overon wrote on Sep 25, 2011, 14:17:
Other than male macho posturing, I never understood why (mostly) men love to eat spicy stuff like this. The spiciness literally overwhelms every other flavor and, if it's spicy enough, even texture. It's like an analgesics that Dentist use, but instead of feeling nothing, you feel nothing else but fire.

I don't even understand why there is this market for trying to one up each other on the spiciness in various products. The basic science behind this is, the more capsaicin it has, the hotter it is. So you it's easy to one up your competition, all the way the point where your sauce is 100% capsaicin and you won, you got the hottest sauce on the planet. Not much of a challenge really. However, I don't think that's legal to sell in a food product because it can hurt people pretty bad.

You can buy bottles of capsaicin pretty easily, though they do all mention that they are a food additive, not a sauce. (ie, you add a few drops to your meal, not a squirt.)

I always get annoyed when the Man vs Food guy takes on a spicy/hot challenge where the chef just uses capsaicin. That's just cheating; it's not using food, it's basically using chemicals. He might as well use battery acid.

Creston
 
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