The SaltThe Salt

What's On Your Plate

Not so ugly, eh? Supposedly imperfect produce rescued and reclaimed for consumption by Bon Appetit and Better Harvests. Far left and far right: Courtesy of Ron Clark/Better Harvests. Center three images: Courtesy of Bon Appétit Management Company hide caption

itoggle caption Far left and far right: Courtesy of Ron Clark/Better Harvests. Center three images: Courtesy of Bon Appétit Management Company

A drone built by Agribotix, a Boulder startup, flies over a farm in Weld County, Colo. The drone has a camera that snaps a high-resolution photo every two seconds. From there, Agribotix stitches the images together, helping the farmer see what's happening in a field. Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media/KUNC hide caption

itoggle caption Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media/KUNC

A 16th century woodcut shows the interior of a kitchen. In medieval Europe, cooks combined contrasting flavors and spices in much the same way that Indian cooking still does today. Paul Lacroix/Wikimedia hide caption

itoggle caption Paul Lacroix/Wikimedia

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"There's no reason to believe that exposure to arsenic in food and wine is above levels that are considered to be safe," says Susan Ebeler, a professor and chemist in the Foods For Health Institute at the University of California, Davis. Erik Schelzig/ASSOCIATED PRESS hide caption

itoggle caption Erik Schelzig/ASSOCIATED PRESS

These beans, grown on test plots at the International Center for Tropical Agriculture in Colombia, can thrive in temperatures that cripple most conventional beans. Courtesy of CIAT/Neil Palmer hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of CIAT/Neil Palmer

Vanilla is seemingly a prima donna spice because its pods have to be hand-pollinated and then boiled and dried in the direct sun for only one hour. iStockphoto hide caption

itoggle caption iStockphoto

Central Illinois corn farmer Jerry McCulley refills his sprayer with the weedkiller glyphosate on a farm near Auburn, Ill. A new assessment of the chemical finds that the (uncertain) risks mainly affect the people who work with it or who come in direct contact with areas where it's applied. Seth Perlman/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Seth Perlman/AP

Bottom round roast is one cut of beef that fits the government's definition of "lean." Still, the definition is confusing to consumers, nutrition scientists argue. Paul Polis/Corbis hide caption

itoggle caption Paul Polis/Corbis

Rachel Ahn, who goes by "Aebong-ee," is among the top 100 most-watched mukbang stars in South Korea. Elise Hu/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Elise Hu/NPR

Neil deGrasse Tyson with a Cambodian cricket rumaki canape, wrapped in bacon. "I have come to surmise, in the culinary universe, that anytime someone feels compelled to wrap something in bacon, it probably doesn't taste very good," he said skeptically before taking a bite. Carole Zimmer for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Carole Zimmer for NPR

A sampling of the multicourse menu served at the Gout de France dinner at the French embassy in Washington, D.C.: (clockwise from top left): seasonal vegetables with winter truffle Bayonne ham crisps; slowly cooked monkfish with fennel pollen flavors in "Armoricaine" sauce; Ariane apple and Guanaja chocolate onctueux; Saint-Nectaire cheese and grilled bread with nuts and raisins. Meredith Rizzo/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Meredith Rizzo/NPR

Snarky notes may not do much to ward off office fridge thieves. "I came across one guy who will intentionally steal people's food when they leave snarky notes," says Dan Pashman, host of the Sporkful. Photo Illustration by Ryan Kellman/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Photo Illustration by Ryan Kellman/NPR

An economist with the Rand Corporation argues that Los Angeles' fast-food ban failed because it merely blocked new construction or expansion of "stand-alone fast-food" restaurants in neighborhoods where that style of restaurant was uncommon to begin with. David McNew/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption David McNew/Getty Images

A new budget plan that calls for turning food stamps into a block grant program for states could affect stores that accept food stamps through an Electronic Benefits Transfer, or EBT, system like this one in Memphis. Thomas Hawk/Flickr hide caption

itoggle caption Thomas Hawk/Flickr

Alaria, a type of seaweed also known as "Wild Atlantic Wakame," grows in the North Atlantic Ocean and is similar to Japanese wakame, a common ingredient in miso soup. Courtesy of Sarah Redmond hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Sarah Redmond

Free-range houses allow chickens to move around freely, but operating costs were 23 percent higher than for traditional cages, according to a new study. Dan Charles/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Dan Charles/NPR

With corn production expected to remain high, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is predicting that prices will continue to fall well into next year. iStockphoto hide caption

itoggle caption iStockphoto

Pig farmer Armando Escaño stands with his Iberian pigs on his farm on western Spain's dehesa. Escaño raises pigs for jamón ibérico, Spain's most prized ham. Lauren Frayer for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Lauren Frayer for NPR

(Left to right) Rodeo concessions include the loaded potato; deep-fried chocolate cupcake and the Texas Tater Twister, a spiral-cut tater on a sausage, deep-fried. (Left and Center)Robert Young/Flickr; Dave 77459/Flickr hide caption

itoggle caption (Left and Center)Robert Young/Flickr; Dave 77459/Flickr

Celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis during a guest appearance on ABC's The Chew last fall. She can cook rich foods and keep her trim figure, but new research suggests that's a difficult feat for amateur cooks watching along at home. Lou Rocco/ABC/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Lou Rocco/ABC/Getty Images