What You Missed & What We Learned

In case you weren't obsessively refreshing mentalfloss.com all week, here's what you missed:

Top 5 Stories Originally Posted This Week

1. The Quick 10: 10 Nuggets About McDonald's, by Stacy Conradt

2. 8 Disastrous Product Names, by Ransom Riggs

3. Invasion of the Zombie Animals, by Miss Cellania

4. Study Break: 7 College Cheating Scandals, by Ethan Trex

5. 10 More People Banned From Britain, by Linda Rodriguez

Top 5 Most Commented Stories

1. The Quick 10: 10 Nuggets About McDonald's, by Stacy Conradt

2. 8 Disastrous Product Names, by Ransom Riggs

3. The Quick 10: 10 Mean Moms, by Stacy Conradt

4. 8 Memorable TV Uncles, by Kara Kovalchik

5. No Photoshop Necessary: The Insanity Continues, by David K. Israel

Top 3 Quizzes Originally Posted This Week

1. Name the Top 10 Newspapers by Daily Circulation, by Carol McLaughlin

2. Baseball Brainteasers, by Jason Plautz

3. What's That Bass Line?, by David K. Israel

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7 Other Things We Learned

1. If you want to meet your favorite celebrity, become a scientist, discover a new animal or insect and name it after him/her.

2. Scientists have some pretty cool ways to date things.

3. Whether you spell it "doughnut" or "donut," it's right (and delicious).

4. Your local stadium's vendors need a gimmick if they want to achieve even a modest level of internet fame.

5. Why text messages are only 160 characters.

6. If you're going to bribe a high school athlete to attend your college, use sturdy envelopes.

7. For many original Star Trek cast members, a recording career was the final frontier.
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The Simple Way to Reheat Your French Fries and Not Have Them Turn Into a Soggy Mess

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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