Japan's waspiest snack

It's enough to make you toss your cookies: Japan's newest snack craze is the product of a rice cracker producer who decided to spice up their recipe a bit ... by adding wasps. Harvested by elderly wasp hunters from a nearby village, the digger wasps are boiled in water, dried and sprinkled over the cracker mix, then stamped by hot iron cracker cutters. As you can see from the picture, they don't skimp on the good stuff (like Raisin Bran, they give you two scoops), though no word yet on what taking a bite of this delicacy does to your tongue. A bag of 20 crackers costs about $3, but supplies are limited since the wasps are caught in the wild, and "only the best" are used.

This sounds suspiciously like a schoolyard game of "would you rather" -- would you rather jump into a pool filled with razor blades or eat a box of wasp cookies? Keep your eyes peeled for razor-blade-pool-jumping, coming to a Japanese blog near you.

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The Simple Way to Reheat Your French Fries and Not Have Them Turn Into a Soggy Mess
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Some restaurant dishes are made to be doggy-bagged and reheated in the microwave the next day. Not French fries: The more crispy and delectable they are when they first arrive on your table, the more of a soggy disappointment they’ll be when you try to revive them at home. But as The Kitchn recently shared, there’s a secret to making leftover fries you’ll actually enjoy eating.

The key is to avoid the microwave altogether. Much of the appeal of fries comes from their crunchy, golden-brown exterior and their creamy potato center. This texture contrast is achieved by deep-frying, and all it takes is a few rotations around a microwave to melt it away. As the fries heat up, they create moisture, transforming all those lovely crispy parts into a flabby mess.

If you want your fries to maintain their crunch, you need to recreate the conditions they were cooked in initially. Set a large pan filled with about 2 tablespoons of oil for every 1 cup of fries you want to cook over medium-high heat. When you see the oil start to shimmer, add the fries in a single layer. After about a minute, flip them over and allow them to cook for half a minute to a minute longer.

By heating up fries with oil in a skillet, you produce something called the Maillard Reaction: This happens when high heat transforms proteins and sugars in food, creating the browning effect that gives fried foods their sought-after color, texture, and taste.

After your fries are nice and crisp, pull them out of the pan with tongs or a spatula, set them on a paper towel to absorb excess oil, and sprinkle them with salt. Now all you need is a perfect burger to feel like you’re eating a restaurant-quality meal at home.

[h/t The Kitchn]

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Bone Collector
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