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Chips, Crisps, Croustilles: A Global Tour of Unusual Potato Chip Flavors

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There’s a whole world of chip flavors out there that most of us have never even imagined. Here are some of the most interesting.

Australia:

Some of the most popular flavors of late sound quite tasty, or at least intriguing, including lime and pepper, sweet chili sauce & sour cream, honey soy chicken, kangaroo, emu and Caesar salad.

Image courtesy of avlxyz's Flickr stream.

Canada:

They may only be a border away from the snack food capital of the world, but they’re miles away when it comes to flavor varieties. A few different options include dill pickle, ketchup, wasabi, ham & mustard, spicy curry, pizza and, of course, poutine.

Image courtesy of lynx81's Flickr stream.

China:

When it comes to interesting snack food flavors, Japan and China are in a constant state of battle, but as far as potato chips go, China seems to have the lead. Japan can't compete with the fruit-flavored chips of China: kiwi, blueberry, mango and lychee are all on the shelves. As for non-fruit flavors, the country still has some delightfully unique options including braised pork, garlic soft-shelled crab, cheese lobster, hazelnut, spicy hot pot, hot & sour fish soup, lemon tea and cucumber.

Image courtesy of toehk's Flickr stream.

Egypt:

If you love Middle Eastern cuisine, then you’ll love Chipsy’s flavor line that includes kebab, stuffed grape leaves and Rumi cheese (above).

Image courtesy of Prince Roy's Flickr stream.

Germany:

The most famous flavor of potato chips in the country is beer, but they are actually not all that popular with the locals. More commonly, Germans prefer to eat paprika chips.

Image courtesy of ceris42's Flickr stream.

Greece:

For those with a soft spot for Greek food, it shouldn’t be too surprising that the country has incorporated a few of its favorite foods into its chip flavors, offering olive oil, lemon-vinegar-black pepper, mushrooms a la crème, mustard, Tzatziki and oregano flavors.

Image courtesy of daftgirly's Flickr stream.

India:

Their food is known for its spices and so are their potato chips. Popular flavors available in both India and Pakistan include mint, masala, coriander and red chili pepper.

Image courtesy of smee_me's Flickr stream.

Japan:

While China certainly leads the way with their fruit chips, Japan isn’t far behind. A few notable varieties include nori & salt, consommé, soy sauce & butter, garlic, mayonnaise, scallop with butter, teriyaki, yakitori, salmon sushi, clam chowder Doritos, hamburger and kimchi.

Image courtesy of kalleboo's Flickr stream.

The Netherlands:

Here we find some perfect flavors for people with the munchies. Lay’s offers quite a selection in the Netherlands, including spaghetti Bolognese, barbecued ham, Mexican herbs, Mediterranean herbs, Oriental spices, spareribs, Thai sweet chili, pepper & cream and chicken & thyme. Yum!

Image courtesy of wbpartridge's Flickr stream.

Russia:

Many Americans would love some of the flavors of our Cold War rivals. A few notable chip choices: bacon, shish kabob, crab, caviar and mushroom & sour cream.

Image courtesy of catorze14's Flickr stream.

South Africa:

If you like meat, then you’ll probably love some of the flavors of chips here including beef jerky and sausage. Of course, these flavors go great with sauces, so you might want to pair them with some chutney, hot sauce or Worcestershire sauce chips.

Image courtesy of mikemedia's Flickr stream.

Spain:

For the most part, Spain prefers their chips fried in olive oil and lightly salted, though there are slightly more gourmet varieties like pink Andean salt or sea salt & black pepper. Prosciutto-style ham is the country's second-bestselling flavor.

Image courtesy of scaredy_kat's Flickr stream.

Scandinavia:

Most of your flavor options this northern corner of Europe all sound pretty darn tasty: mushroom, horseradish, black pepper & spring onion, and pretty much anything with sour cream, including béarnaise. Things get weirder when chip companies try to mimic international flavors: Texas Grilled Cheese & Onion, the whimsical Kebab Dream (above), and Louisiana Style Hot BBQ are all available from Swedish brand OLW.

Image credit: Moa at twinkuss

The U.K.

While the residents of the United Kingdom seem to appreciate many of the same foods as Americans, their chip flavors tell a different story. Some of the many flavors of note include prawn cocktail, steak & onion, lamb & mint, sausage & ketchup, pickled onion, marmite, roast pork & mustard sauce, turkey & bacon, stilton & cranberry, roast beef & Yorkshire pudding, mozzarella with tomato & basil, beer & cheddar, paella, bratwurst, sausage & brown sauce, Cajun squirrel, chili & chocolate, duck & hoisin sauce and haggis. So if you really want some variety in your “crisps” and don’t want to leave the states, you can always head to your local British imports store and see what flavors they carry.

Image courtesy of Scorpions and Centaurs' Flickr stream.
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There are probably hundreds of weird potato chip flavors out there flying under our radar, so tell us what crazy things we missed. What’s the best and/or weirdest chip you've ever had? Have you ever tried one you thought would be gross, but ended up really liking?

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Food
In 1938, The New York Times Thought Cheeseburgers Were a Weird New Fad
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People love to make fun of The New York Times's trend section: Their umpteen pieces on the Millennial craze have been called "hate-reads," and their dissection of cultural norms such as oversharing, defriending people in real life, and chopped salad at lunch as "trends" can be hilarious and infuriatingly obvious.

But while their pieces aren't always exactly timely, they will certainly make for interesting reads in a few decades—just like this throwback piece on a California fad called "cheeseburgers" from 1938.

When "cheeseburger" was first mentioned in the October 1938 article, it was in a long list about the "whimsy" of California eateries. Then, nine years later in May 1947, the Times revisited the fad, writing, "At first, the combination of beef with cheese and tomatoes, which sometimes are used, may seem bizarre." Fortunately, their intrepid reporter could see the bigger picture. "If you reflect a bit, you’ll understand the combination is sound gastronomically."

Now, 70 years later, you can not only ask for gourmet cheeses like brie, goat, or gorgonzola on your burger—or spend upwards of $300 on one—there are multiple burger chains where you can order stacks on stacks on stacks of cheeseburger patties. That weird little West Coast fad has become a multibillion dollar industry, and cheeseburgers are practically our national food (arguably in hot contention with apple pie). Congratulations, America! We did it!

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science
2017 Ig Nobel Prizes Celebrate Research on How Crocodiles Affect Gambling and Other Odd Studies
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The Ig Nobel Prizes are back, and this year's winning selection of odd scientific research topics is as weird as ever. As The Guardian reports, the 27th annual awards of highly improbable studies "that first make people laugh, then make them think" were handed out on September 14 at a theater at Harvard University. The awards, sponsored by the Annals of Improbable Research, honor research you never would have thought someone would take the time (or the funding) to study, much less would be published.

The 2017 highlights include a study on whether cats can be both a liquid and a solid at the same time and one on whether the presence of a live crocodile can impact the behavior of gamblers. Below, we present the winners from each of the 10 categories, each weirder and more delightful than the last.

PHYSICS

"For using fluid dynamics to probe the question 'Can a Cat Be Both a Solid and a Liquid?'"

Winner: Marc-Antoine Fardin

Study: "On the Rheology of Cats," published in Rheology Bulletin [PDF]

ECONOMICS

"For their experiments to see how contact with a live crocodile affects a person's willingness to gamble."

Winners: Matthew J. Rockloff and Nancy Greer

Study: "Never Smile at a Crocodile: Betting on Electronic Gaming Machines is Intensified by Reptile-Induced Arousal," published in the Journal of Gambling Studies

ANATOMY

"For his medical research study 'Why Do Old Men Have Big Ears?'"

Winner: James A. Heathcote

Study: "Why Do Old Men Have Big Ears?" published in the BMJ

BIOLOGY

"For their discovery of a female penis, and a male vagina, in a cave insect."

Winners: Kazunori Yoshizawa, Rodrigo L. Ferreira, Yoshitaka Kamimura, and Charles Lienhard (who delivered their acceptance speech via video from inside a cave)

Study: "Female Penis, Male Vagina and Their Correlated Evolution in a Cave Insect," published in Current Biology

FLUID DYNAMICS

"For studying the dynamics of liquid-sloshing, to learn what happens when a person walks backwards while carrying a cup of coffee."

Winner: Jiwon Han

Study: "A Study on the Coffee Spilling Phenomena in the Low Impulse Regime," published in Achievements in the Life Sciences

NUTRITION

"For the first scientific report of human blood in the diet of the hairy-legged vampire bat."

Winners: Fernanda Ito, Enrico Bernard, and Rodrigo A. Torres

Study: "What is for Dinner? First Report of Human Blood in the Diet of the Hairy-Legged Vampire Bat Diphylla ecaudata," published in Acta Chiropterologica

MEDICINE

"For using advanced brain-scanning technology to measure the extent to which some people are disgusted by cheese."

Winners: Jean-Pierre Royet, David Meunier, Nicolas Torquet, Anne-Marie Mouly, and Tao Jiang

Study: "The Neural Bases of Disgust for Cheese: An fMRI Study," published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience

COGNITION

"For demonstrating that many identical twins cannot tell themselves apart visually."

Winners: Matteo Martini, Ilaria Bufalari, Maria Antonietta Stazi, and Salvatore Maria Aglioti

Study: "Is That Me or My Twin? Lack of Self-Face Recognition Advantage in Identical Twins," published in PLOS One

OBSTETRICS

"For showing that a developing human fetus responds more strongly to music that is played electromechanically inside the mother's vagina than to music that is played electromechanically on the mother's belly."

Winners: Marisa López-Teijón, Álex García-Faura, Alberto Prats-Galino, and Luis Pallarés Aniorte

Study: "Fetal Facial Expression in Response to Intravaginal Music Emission,” published in Ultrasound

PEACE PRIZE

"For demonstrating that regular playing of a didgeridoo is an effective treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea and snoring."

Winners: Milo A. Puhan, Alex Suarez, Christian Lo Cascio, Alfred Zahn, Markus Heitz, and Otto Braendli

Study: "Didgeridoo Playing as Alternative Treatment for Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Syndrome: Randomised Controlled Trial," published by the BMJ

Congratulations, all.

[h/t The Guardian]

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