Savor

Savor digs into how people live and how they eat – and why. Hosts Anney Reese and Lauren Vogelbaum interview the culinary creators and consumers of the world, exploring the science, history, and culture of food and drink, all with a key question in mind: Why do we like what we like, and how can we find more of those things?

Food
Places & Travel
Society & Culture
1
Cracking Open the Pistachio
This lime-green culinary nut partially deshells itself when it’s ready for us to eat. Anney and Lauren shake down the history and science behind pistachios.
39 min
2
Old Bay on the Block
This brand of seasonings has made itself synonymous with Maryland seafood. Anney and Lauren boil down the history and culture of Old Bay products.
41 min
3
Root Beer: Bark AND Bite
This sweet beverage doesn’t necessarily contain either roots or beer, but it certainly can. Anney and Lauren dip into the history and culture of root beer.
41 min
4
Savor Classics: Space Food
We owe so many innovations in food safety and technology to the simple fact that astronauts need to eat. In this classic episode, Anney and Lauren launch into the history (and sometimes questionable menus) of space food.
43 min
5
Foods of 'Pokémon': Gotta Eat ‘Em All
This sweeping media franchise has featured plenty of foods and drinks in its 25 years – including some made from Pokémon themselves. (Our courage will pull us through.) Y’all teach us, and we’ll teach you about the fictional foods of the 'Pokémon' universe.
57 min
6
Listener Mail VI: Return of the Inbox
It’s not a trap! We again reach into the mailbag (digital and physical) to share listeners’ stories -- including mac & cheese disasters, Guinness lyrics, and literal snail mail.
40 min
7
The Dandelion Episode Blows
This prolific yellow flower has tender, nutritious leaves and a somewhat weedy reputation. Anney and Lauren explore the bittersweet science and history of the dandelion.
30 min
8
Dishing on General Tso's Chicken
This Chinese-American comfort food was inspired by Hunan, originated in Taipei, and developed in New York City. Anney and Lauren dig into the history and culture(s) behind General Tso’s chicken.
32 min
9
The Cardamom Pod(cast)
This complex spice, both warming and cooling, brings zing to foods from baked goods and curries to caffeinated drinks and beyond. Anney and Lauren dig into the science and history of cardamom.
31 min
10
The Smooth Guinness Episode
This brewing company, famous for its Irish stouts, is one of the most recognizable beer brands in the world. Anney and Lauren tap into the history and science of Guinness.
51 min
11
Say Mac 'n' Cheese!
This creamy comfort food is a classic, whether it’s crafted or Krafted. Anney and Lauren dig into the history and industrial evolution of macaroni and cheese.
61 min
12
The Morel Mushroom of the Story
These prized mushrooms have been around for a long time, but they’ve managed to remain mysterious. Anney and Lauren explore the science and history behind morel mushrooms.
40 min
13
The Plucky Haggis Episode
This Scottish sausage may be made with humble ingredients, but it’s the stuff(ing?) of legend. Anney and Lauren explore the biology, sportsmanship, and poetry of haggis.
51 min
14
The Sweet-and-Sour Tamarind Episode
This tropical fruit lends a bright punch of flavor to both sweet and savory dishes in cuisines around the world. Anney and Lauren dig into the science and history of tamarind.
27 min
15
The Sublime Freeze Drying Episode
This process creates lightweight, flavorful preserved foods that keep for years and can be easily reconstituted – just add water. Anney and Lauren explore the cool science and history of freeze drying.
38 min
16
The Grueling Oatmeal Episode
Bowls of this cereal grain have been sustaining humans for tens of thousands of years. Anney and Lauren explore the sweet/savory science and history of oatmeal.
54 min
17
Winner, Winner, Chicken Nugget
These crisp-coated, bite-sized bits of processed chicken changed the way the chicken industry works. Anney and Lauren dip into the history and culture of the chicken nugget.
46 min
18
On Air with Whipped Cream
Turning liquid cream into this delicate foam requires only a little work – but a lot of science. Anney and Lauren dig into the history and structure of whipped cream, including how it came to be sold in pressurized cans.
46 min
19
Savor Classics: Brunch
Brunch has always been a meal of excess and leisure, and it's therefore associated with some ugly classist, racist, and sexist ideals. But waffles are nice! In this classic episode, Anney and Lauren break down the problematic yet delicious history of brunch.
42 min
20
The Power of the Praline
In the New Orleans tradition, these melt-in-your-mouth pecan confections welcome tourists to the French Quarter – and related treats delight in other corners of the world. Anney and Lauren stir up the history and culture of pralines.
37 min
21
Persimmons of Interest
These sweet fruits can be shockingly astringent before they’re ripe – and they owe all kinds of amazing properties to that astringency. Anney and Lauren dig into the not at all cut-and-dried science and history of persimmons.
49 min
22
Dipping into Queso
This melty, seasoned cheese dip is best known for having physical properties that do not belong to cheese. Anney and Lauren flow with the science and history of chile con queso.
46 min
23
Saffron: As Good As Gold
This spice is the most expensive in the world because it’s made from one small part of flowers that bloom only once a year. Anney and Lauren follow the threads of the science and history of saffron.
49 min
24
The Paella Episode Panned Out
This comforting dish is a lot more than just rice with stuff – it’s been called the history of Spain in a pan. Anney and Lauren dig into the rich story behind paella.
38 min
25
The Maligned Lima Bean
These half-moon legumes go by many names and spark many strong opinions. Anney and Lauren explore the science and history of the lima bean/butterbean.
38 min
26
Savor Classics: Jelly Doughnuts
Sufganiyot, pączki, Berliners, bismarcks, or jambusters: Whatever you call 'em, we love jelly doughnuts. Anney and Lauren explore how this treat became a part of holidays around the world.
30 min
27
The Scrapple of Our Eye
This breakfast protein isn’t well known outside of the Mid-Atlantic, but not for a lack of enthusiastic press. Anney and Lauren dig into the history, culture, and poetry of scrapple.
36 min
28
Poppin' Off About Pringles
These potato-based snack chips are wonders of structural science. Anney and Lauren explore the history and mathematics behind Pringles.
48 min
29
The Icewine Cometh
This sweet wine is made from grapes frozen on the vine to produce concentrated flavors. Anney and Lauren explore the decidedly cool science and history of ice wine.
27 min
30
Cracking Wise with Sage
This warm-flavored herb has been highly regarded as a seasoning and a medicine throughout the ages. Anney and Lauren explore the history, culture, and science of sage.
33 min
31
Our Daily Cornbread
This bread is definitely made from cornmeal, but what else goes in (or definitely doesn’t go in) is a matter of some opinion. Anney and Lauren dig into the history and culture of cornbread.
43 min
32
Bowled Over by Miso
This seasoning paste (and soup ingredient) owes its complex flavors to a double fermentation of grains and legumes. Anney and Lauren dip into the history and science of miso.
37 min
33
Fictional Foods: The Chronicles of Narnia
This series of fantasy stories is about adventure, friendship, loyalty, faith – and food. Anney and Lauren go further up and further into the fantastical fruits and humble feasts of C.S. Lewis’s ‘The Chronicles of Narnia’.
53 min
34
Savor Classics: Toasting
Toasting can be an art, an honor, or an excuse to drink a lot. In this classic episode, Anney and Lauren explore the culture of clinking glasses (or not!), from ancient toasting traditions to how people do it around the world today. Hear hear!
38 min
35
Savor Classics: Quiche
"Quiche, the simple baked custard that took the '70s by storm, has a winding history -- involving some weird gender issues. In this classic episode, Anney and Lauren serve forth the ins and outs of quiche."
27 min
36
Making Peace with Olives
These fruits prove that being bitter and oily doesn’t mean you can’t be popular. Anney and Lauren pit their wits against the science and history of olives.
40 min
37
Listener Mail V: The Inbox Strikes Back
The adventure continues! We turn again to our inboxes to share your stories, from a persevering pineapple and a beef with Ginger Beef to sweet maple syrup memories and one spicy Princess Stew.
43 min
38
The Smokin' Pastrami Episode
A treatment including curing, smoking, and seasoning turns tough beef brisket into this delectable deli meat. Anney and Lauren dig into the history and science behind pastrami.
36 min
39
The Souped Up Campbell's Episode
This brand of shelf-stable soups (and other foods) is an American staple, replete with nostalgia, sodium, and labor disputes. Anney and Lauren tap into the history and culture behind the Campbell Soup Company and their products.
58 min
40
Grapefruit: One Strange Mother Pucker
This large citrus fruit features tasty tart and bitter flavors – but watch out, because it doesn’t mix with some medications. Anney and Lauren explore the history and science of grapefruit.
42 min
41
Savor Classics: Gingerbread
Why do we shape gingerbread cookies into people and houses? Why is it generally considered a winter treat? In this classic episode, Anney and Lauren tackle gingerbread (in all its formats) head first.
42 min
42
Ginger Snaps Back
This warming spice is an ingredient in both sweet and savory dishes the world over. Anney and Lauren dig up the history and science of ginger.
32 min
43
The Interesting Intrigue of Margarine
This nondairy butter substitute has been embroiled in legal and nutritional controversy since its invention. Anney and Lauren explore the history and science of margarine.
42 min
44
Get Schooled on the Anchovy
This small, silvery fish may have a bad reputation in the U.S., but it’s a tasty (and integral!) part of cuisines all over the world. Anney and Lauren dive into the history and science of anchovies.
33 min
45
The Flippin' Burger Episode
These highly customizable sandwiches are an American classic with a highly debated history. Anney and Lauren explore the origins and permutations of the hamburger.
60 min
46
In the Trenches with Victory Gardens
These home and community gardens helped citizens eat better (and keep busy) during the World Wars. Anney and Lauren dig into the history of victory gardens -- and the ways that sustenance gardening has thrived during peacetime, too.
40 min
47
Listener Mail Episode IV: A New Hope
We turn again to the listener mailbox to hear from all y’all about your cheesecake successes (and failures), good drinks, historic dinner parties, very best macaron tips, and more.
37 min
48
Savor Classics: Butter
Since before written history, humans have been mad about butter. (Er, sometimes literally angry.) In this classic episode, we explore the slippery physics, surprising strife, and salubrious nutrition of butter (and margarine, sorta).
60 min
49
Food Fairy Tales: 'Hansel and Gretel'
Food (and the lack thereof) plays heavily in this folk tale popularized by the Brothers Grimm. We explore the tropes in ‘Hansel and Gretel’, and special guests join us for a soundscaped reading of the story.
41 min
50
The Carob Pod
This sweet, rich legume has sometimes been used as a chocolate substitute, but it can (and should!) stand on its own. Anney and Lauren dip into the history and science of carob.
30 min
51
In Bibi's Kitchen' with Hawa Hassan
This new cookbook invites readers into the kitchens of East African grandmothers, who share their stories through recipes. We chat with the author, Hawa Hassan, about how her own story led to the book’s creation, and the community that made it possible.
27 min
52
Cream Cheese: What a Spread
This fresh, spreadable cheese has roots that go back hundreds of years, but it found its niche in American cuisine in the past century with bagels, dips, and casseroles. Anney and Lauren dip into the science and history of cream cheese.
39 min
53
Putting Together the Pieces of Reese's
This brand of candies and snacks has the peanut-butter-and-chocolate market cornered. Anney and Lauren dig into the sweet and salty story of Reese’s.
42 min
54
Fleshing Out the Food of ‘Hannibal’
This creepy television show features downright delicious-looking dishes – which have to appear to be maybe-human flesh but be made of actor-friendly ingredients. Anney and Lauren discuss the implications and reality of the food featured in ‘Hannibal’.
49 min
55
The Appealing Apple Episode
This popular tree fruit has been the subject of myths and legends throughout the ages – possibly due to linguistic confusion. Anney and Lauren explore the juicy history and snaking science of the apple.
54 min
56
Savor Classics: Mocktail Hour
No- or low-alcohol cocktails are getting some serious attention these days. In this classic episode, we explore the science, history, and culture of ‘mocktails’ with special guest Julia Bainbridge, whose new book 'Good Drinks' explores the subject.
47 min
57
The Cuban Sandwich: A Tale of Two Cities
This classic Cuban/Floridian sandwich includes various pork products, cheese, mustard, and pickles – but its exact makeup is as contested as its exact birthplace. Anney and Lauren get to the meat of the story behind the Cubano.
35 min
58
In for a Treat With Rice-A-Roni
This brand of easily prepared rice pilaf and noodle dishes was born from a marriage of cultures during America’s era of convenience food. Anney and Lauren dig into the story behind Rice-A-Roni.
38 min
59
Interview: Celebrating ‘The Sporkful’ with Dan ...
’The Sporkful’ is toasting to its 10-year anniversary this week, so we sat down with host Dan Pashman to chat about how the show has changed over the past decade – and how the food world has changed along with it.
41 min
60
Spring into Fall with Märzen
This traditional lager was the most popular beer at Munich’s Oktoberfest for a century. Anney and Lauren dip into the bottom-fermenting science and barmy history of märzen and other Oktoberfest beers.
34 min
61
Krab: Imitation Is a Form of Crab
The ‘crab’ in your California roll and seafood salad is almost certainly an imitation made up of other seafood that’s been shaped and flavored to resemble crab legs. Anney and Lauren crack open the science of surimi and the history of krab sticks.
31 min
62
Cashing in on Cashews
This buttery-sweet tree nut makes a tasty snack, milk, or ingredient – but its fruit is poisonous. But but: Its apple is not! Anney and Lauren break down the science and history of the cashew tree, nut, and apple.
40 min
63
Gochujang: Awesome Sauce
This spicy-savory-salty-funky-sweet sauce is the product of thousands of years of fermentation tradition. Anney and Lauren dip into the science and history of gochujang.
35 min
64
The Bon Macaron Episode
These pretty, meringue-based cookies are a delightful treat – but can be a disaster to attempt making. Anney and Lauren explore the convoluted history and complex structural science of macarons.
42 min
65
Unboxing Boxed Wine
This often inexpensive, sometimes maligned method of packaging wine has a history steeped in intrigue. Anney and Lauren dip into the environmental science and crime-ridden history of boxed wine.
53 min
66
The Fennel Countdown
This lightly anise-flavored vegetable is used for its bulb, stalks, fronds, and seeds alike. Anney and Lauren dig into the science and history of fennel.
27 min
67
The Killer Breakfast Cereal Episode
These often sugary, heavily advertised products all root from an ascetic health food movement in the 1800s. Anney and Lauren explore the strange history and gun-puffed science of breakfast cereals.
58 min
68
Savor Classics: Oysters
Oysters were one of humanity's first foods, and they've remained ragingly popular ever since. In this classic episode, Anney and Lauren dive into the biology and bloody history (piracy! murder!) behind oysters.
50 min
69
Breaking Down Molecular Gastronomy
This branch of food science studies the physics, chemistry, and creative art of making food. Anney and Lauren explore the difficult definitions and delightful nerdery behind molecular gastronomy.
47 min
70
Introducing Get Down with K-Town
Through cooking and conversation, chef Esther Choi dives deep into the rich world of Korean-American culture. Esther invites guests to open up as she cooks their favorite Korean dishes, drawing on traditional family recipes she’s refined at her restaurants Mŏkbar and Ms. Yoo. Esther and her guest dive into topics ranging from food to family, from K-pop to K-dramas, and from fashion to sexuality, plastic surgery, adoption and more – all to explore what being Korean in America means today.
3 min
71
In for a Treat with Ice Cream Trucks
These vehicles don’t just bring frozen desserts to their customers – they can bring neighborhoods together. Anney and Lauren explore the history and music of ice cream trucks.
43 min
72
The Great Caper
These small, preserved flavor bombs are made from flower buds. Anney and Lauren investigate the salty science and history of capers and caperberries.
27 min
73
What’s Shaking with Salt and Pepper Shakers?
When you need just a sprinkle of seasoning, salt and pepper shakers are a practical solution – but the designs people create for these everyday objects can be spectacular. Anney and Lauren explore the opulent history and kitschy culture of condiment casters.
36 min
74
Listener Mail 3: With a Vengeance
Anney and Lauren once again dig into the virtual listener mail bag and discuss the good, the bad, and the vodka.
48 min
75
Savor Classics: Marshmallows
Marshmallows in one form or another (hearts, stars, and horseshoes included) have been enjoyed for thousands of years and involve some serious science. This is no fluff piece, is what we're saying.
44 min
76
Cocktail Hour: The Mojito
For a simple mix of rum, mint, lime, and sugar, this cocktail has inspired a complex blend of love and hate. Anney and Lauren dip into the uncertain history and contentious culture of the mojito.
38 min
77
Bustin’ in with the Kool-Aid Episode
This brand of bright-colored drink mixes dates to the 1920s and owes its place it pop culture to an anthropomorphic pitcher. Anney and Lauren explore the history of Kool-Aid and its enthusiastic mascot.
56 min
78
The Queen Mangosteen
This tropical fruit is famously delectable and infamously finicky to grow. Anney and Lauren dig into the history and horticulture of the mangosteen.
32 min
79
The Edna Lewis Episode
Edna Lewis was a Black Southern chef and writer who deeply influenced the movement toward fresh, seasonal American cuisine. Anney and Lauren dip into the life, career, and legacy of this sometimes unsung culinary hero.
34 min
80
Stake Out: Food in ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’
If you count vampirism, this show was technically all about food. Anney and Lauren buff up on the sometimes magical, sometimes metaphorical foods and drinks featured in the television series ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’.
56 min
81
Fugu: Savor and the Blowfish
Many pufferfish contain a deadly neurotoxin – and that’s part of why they’re a delicacy in some cuisines. Anney and Lauren dip into the swell science and strange history of eating pufferfish.
46 min
82
Banking on Seed Vaults
These cryogenic storage facilities are a newfangled way to accomplish an old goal: preserving seeds for later study and use. Anney and Lauren explore the science and history behind seed banks and vaults.
38 min
83
Chef Boyardee: Can-Do Attitude
This brand of mass-produced canned pasta dishes started in the kitchen of an actual Italian American chef – Ettore Boiardi – whose picture is still on the packaging. Anney and Lauren dig into the history of Chef Boyardee.
37 min
84
Savor Classics: The Gin & Tonic
This simple, refreshing staple cocktail wouldn't exist if it weren't for heart disease and malaria. In this classic episode, Anney and Lauren trace the history of gin and tonic water -- and explain the science of why they're so tasty together.
41 min
85
Listener Mail 2: The New Batch
We dive back into the mail bag for more stories from y’all excellent listeners, including (but not limited to!) pizza sacrilege, invasive ranch, vintage ads, and elusive egg hunts.
46 min
86
Interview: Agricultural Infotainment in Hawaii
Kualoa Ranch hosts cattle, oysters, cacao, Godzilla footprints, Kong bones, and tourists aplenty. We speak with Kualoa's Director of Diversified Agriculture & Land Stewardship about building a sustainable ranch among the bounty and challenges Oahu offers.
56 min
87
The Funky Green Onion Episode
Call 'em scallions, spring onions, salad onions, bunching onions, or welsh onions -- these leafy green onion tops add a mild kick to dishes the world over. Anney and Lauren dig into the tangled history and etymology of scallions.
42 min
88
This Episode Is a Peach
These tasty tree fruits have a simple genome and a complicated history. Anney and Lauren explore the origins, science, and marketing behind peaches.
49 min
89
Savor Classics: Cinnamon
Cinnamon's heat drove hundreds of years of intrigue before becoming the kitchen staple it is today. Anney and Lauren dig into the troubled history of this delicious bark.
35 min
90
Stewing on Oxtail
This cut of beef is prized for its toughness – treated properly, it turns everything it touches delectable. Anney and Lauren dig into the history and science of oxtail.
31 min
91
Roquefort: Worth Its Weight In Mold
This French blue cheese, famous for its funk, wouldn’t be possible without limestone and mold. Anney and Lauren explore the legendary history and rockin’ science of Roquefort.
42 min
92
Oregano and Marjoram: Herbs by Any Other Name
This family of herbs lends warm, woody flavors to all kinds of dishes, and has been used medicinally for millennia. Anney and Lauren explore the science and history of oregano and marjoram.
38 min
93
Mustard: Going Against the Grain
This spice and the condiments made from it bring heat (and color, and structural cohesion) to dishes around the world. Anney and Lauren dip into spicy science and history of mustard.
36 min
94
Listener Maaaaaaail!
Y’all are the heart of this show. Anney and Lauren read & respond to messages from listeners on topics from asparagus to sauerkraut to snails.
42 min
95
Tikka Masala: Lost in the Sauce
This creamy, warming dish is the subject of tremendous popularity -- and tremendous debate. Anney and Lauren dig into the many recipes and histories behind tikka masala.
25 min
96
Yerba Mate: Steeped in History
This plant is used to make highly popular (and highly caffeinated) drinks around South America and the world. Anney and Lauren dip into the history and science of yerba mate.
34 min
97
Savor Classics: Sourdough
In your own kitchen, you can tame wild microbes and use them to bake tasty, slightly tart sourdough bread. In this classic (yet timely) episode, Anney and Lauren explore the twisting history and practical science of making sourdough.
46 min
98
Fictional Foods: 'The Simpsons'
From donuts to Duff beer, this long-running television show spends a lot of time focusing on food. Anney and Lauren explore the silly, the satirical, and the strangely delicious-sounding foods of ‘The Simpsons’.
54 min
99
That Risotto, Though
This saucy rice dish seems deceptively simple for the potency of the opinions it can inspire. Anney and Lauren dig into the history (fascism??) and science (no stirring necessary?!?) of risotto.
33 min
100
Relishing the Radish
These spicy, crunchy root vegetables can grow to amazing sizes and give a kick to all kinds of dishes. Anney and Lauren dig into the history and science behind radishes.
32 min