The Sporkful

Dan Pashman and Stitcher

We obsess about food to learn more about people. The Sporkful isn't for foodies, it's for eaters. Hosted by Dan Pashman, who's also the inventor of the new pasta shape cascatelli. James Beard and Webby Award winner for Best Food Podcast. A Stitcher Production.

  • 29 minutes 56 seconds
    Yia Vang Says Hmong Food Is His Family's Legacy

    For years, chef Yia Vang operated his restaurant Union Hmong Kitchen in a trailer outside of a brewery in Minneapolis. Last year, he finally opened his first brick-and-mortar restaurant, and it already feels like a neighborhood institution — especially in the region of the U.S. with the largest community of Hmong refugees from southeast Asia. Over a meal of whole grilled branzino, Hmong sausage, purple sticky rice, and a lot more, Yia tells Dan about his mission to tell his parents’ story — and the story of the Hmong people — through his cooking. Yia also talks about his own journey: he was born in a Thai refugee camp, moved with his family to Amish country, and then worked as a church “lunch lady” before breaking out on his own. Now he’s fighting tooth and nail to open a new restaurant that will fully celebrate Hmong food the way he envisions.

    The Sporkful production team includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell. Publishing by Shantel Holder and transcription by Emily Nguyen.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    17 June 2024, 9:55 am
  • 35 minutes 43 seconds
    Book Tour 2: How’d You Get So Good At Failure?

    In the second half of our Best of the Book Tour series, we’re answering your questions! We’ll tackle the most frequently asked questions Dan got on the tour, and the ones he never saw coming. Plus we’ll hear from other folks who worked on Anything’s Pastable about the recipes that were cut from the book, and the ones that created the most conflict between Dan and his collaborators. Finally, Dan answers the question on everyone’s mind: Now that he’s conquered pasta, which food will he take on next?

    The Sporkful production team includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell, with production this week by Johanna Mayer and editing by Tomeka Weatherspoon. Publishing by Shantel Holder and transcription by Emily Nguyen.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    10 June 2024, 9:55 am
  • 22 minutes 49 seconds
    Reheat: Andy Richter Bought A Midlife Crisis Fridge

    The comic, actor, writer, and podcast host, best known as Conan O’Brien’s late night TV sidekick, tells us why he chose a really nice refrigerator over a sports car. And he traces his issues with weight back to a childhood ice cream outing with his grandmother. 

    This episode originally aired on July 29, 2019 and January 31, 2017, and was produced by Dan Pashman, Anne Saini, and Ngofeen Mputubwele. The Sporkful team now includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell.

    Every other Friday, we reach into our deep freezer and reheat an episode to serve up to you. We're calling these our Reheats. If you have a show you want reheated, send us an email or voice memo at [email protected], and include your name, your location, which episode, and why.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    7 June 2024, 5:55 pm
  • 40 minutes 47 seconds
    Book Tour 1: Do You Really Need That Many Recipe Tests?

    For six weeks this spring, Dan hit the road for the biggest tour in Sporkful history, all in celebration of his cookbook Anything’s Pastable. He traveled to ten cities and spoke with a stacked line-up of chefs, comedians, and journalists in front of live audiences. In this first of two episodes we’re releasing of the best moments from the tour, Claire Saffitz, Sam Sanders, Lindy West, Joanne Lee Molinaro, Pati Jinich, Andy Richter, Kae Lani Palmisano, Kim Severson, Dan Souza, and Ann Kim sit in the host chair and ask Dan questions about the book, his strongly-held food opinions, and more, covering ground we didn’t get to in our original series about the cookbook. Nothing is off the table. Claire Saffitz admits to ruining her pan making spaghetti all'assassina. Pati Jinich processes her shock over Dan’s pasta enchiladas. And Lindy West plays a game with Dan that’s definitely not appropriate for the whole family.

    The Sporkful production team includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell, with production this week by Johanna Mayer and editing by Tomeka Weatherspoon.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    3 June 2024, 9:55 am
  • 32 minutes 9 seconds
    How You Can Taste Food Like A Flavor Chemist

    "Natural flavors” show up on ingredient lists for all kinds of foods. But what does that mean exactly? We get a peek into the secretive science of flavoring when we talk with Marie Wright of ADM, who’s created more than 1,000 flavors in her 30+ years as a flavor chemist. She explains how natural flavors are made, why lemon flavor doesn’t contain lemon juice, and why flavoring plant-based burgers is so hard. Then she walks Dan through a series of experiments to teach him to taste food the way she does. (You can do your own versions with instructions at sporkful.com.) Plus, Marie responds to criticism about the rise of natural and artificial flavors in processed foods, and their role in the obesity epidemic.

    This episode originally aired on June 26, 2020, and was produced by Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, and Andres O’Hara. It was edited by Tracey Samuelson and mixed by Jared O’Connell. The Sporkful team now includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O’Hara, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O’Connell. Publishing by Shantel Holder and transcription by Emily Nguyen.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    27 May 2024, 9:55 am
  • 29 minutes 49 seconds
    Reheat: Why Roy Wood Jr. Sees Pros To Bad Service And Confederate Flags

    Comedian and Daily Show correspondent Roy Wood Jr. is known for his thoughtful and pointed takes on race. He joins us to discuss McRib conspiracy theories, the dangers of touring the South as a black comic, and the advantages of bad service and Confederate flags. Plus Roy talks about what he learned about food from his father over the course of their conflicted relationship.

    This episode originally aired on February 11, 2019, and was produced by Dan Pashman, Anne Saini, and Ngofeen Mputubwele, with editing by Gianna Palmer and mixing by Jared O'Connell. The Sporkful team now includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell. Transcription by Emily Nguyen.

    Every other Friday, we reach into our deep freezer and reheat an episode to serve up to you. We're calling these our Reheats. If you have a show you want reheated, send us an email or voice memo at [email protected], and include your name, your location, which episode, and why.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    24 May 2024, 5:55 pm
  • 30 minutes 45 seconds
    When Mom Forgets Her Favorite Foods, With Michele Norris

    “Tell me about your mama’s kitchen.” That’s how Michele Norris, former host of NPR’s All Things Considered, starts conversations with the likes of Michelle Obama and Matthew Broderick on her podcast Your Mama’s Kitchen. So naturally, Dan turns the tables and asks Michele about her own mama’s kitchen — and how those earliest food memories shape us. Then Michele and Dan take a call from a woman who’s struggling with her mother’s food choices since her mom developed dementia, and they respond to listeners’ hot takes and food disputes, including from a caller who has strong feelings about cooked fruit.

    The Sporkful production team includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Shantel Holder, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell. Transcription by Emily Nguyen.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    20 May 2024, 9:55 am
  • 31 minutes 8 seconds
    Bridgerton’s Claudia Jessie Likes Life At A Low Simmer

    Actor Claudia Jessie is just as nonconformist as Eloise, her character on the hit Netflix show Bridgerton. She lived on a houseboat for three years, doesn’t have social media, and opposes multi-tasking. She likes living at a slower pace — and she has the same attitude when it comes to food. Claudia chats with Dan about chip butties, “shelf sweeping” (think: Chopped), and why she sort of wishes she waited until she was a bit older to go vegan. Then, she embodies Eloise to take a BuzzFeed quiz that promises to tell you which Bridgerton character you are based on the desserts you choose. Does the quiz know Eloise as well as Claudia does?

    The Sporkful production team includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Nora Ritchie, Grace Rubin, and Jared O'Connell. Publishing by Shantel Holder and transcription by Emily Nguyen.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    13 May 2024, 9:55 am
  • 38 minutes
    Reheat: What Dumplings Can’t Fix

    How do parents who adopt kids from other countries use food to connect their children to their birthplace? And what happens when those kids grow up and feel like it wasn't enough? 

    This episode originally aired on July 31, 2017. It was produced by Dan Pashman and Anne Saini, and edited by Dan Charles, with additional editing by Rebecca Carroll, Nicole Chung, and Peter Clowney. The Sporkful team now includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell. Publishing by Shantel Holder and transcription by Emily Nguyen.

    Every other Friday, we reach into our deep freezer and reheat an episode to serve up to you. We're calling these our Reheats. If you have a show you want reheated, send us an email or voice memo at [email protected], and include your name, your location, which episode, and why.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    10 May 2024, 5:55 pm
  • 37 minutes 1 second
    Bringing Georgia O’Keeffe To Life With Her Recipes

    Sotheby’s is about to put a trove of Georgia O'Keeffe items up for sale. While the auction will include paintings likely to go for millions of dollars, we're interested in something less valuable, but to us, way more exciting — O'Keeffe's box of grease-stained, handwritten recipes. This week Dan goes to see the recipes himself and talks with art experts, O’Keeffe scholars, and a woman who cooked for O'Keeffe towards the end of her life to find out what the recipes say about the artist. As for the auction? Well, it doesn't go exactly as planned.

    To see all of Georgia O'Keeffe's digitized recipes, visit Yale's Beinecke Library website.

    This episode originally aired on March 29, 2020, and was produced by Emma Morgenstern and Harry Huggins. It was edited by Tracey Samuelson, and mixed by Jared O’Connell. The Sporkful production team now includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    6 May 2024, 9:55 am
  • 32 minutes 27 seconds
    benny blanco Says Apple Fritters Are Better Than Sex

    Music producer and artist benny blanco has credits on 29 number one songs, working with stars such as Katy Perry, SZA, Rihanna, Justin Bieber, Halsey, and more. But he’s long been as obsessed with food as he is with music. Now, benny’s releasing Open Wide: A Cookbook for Friends. It’s not just a collection of recipes, it’s also a manual for throwing a great party -- a topic that benny takes very seriously. He dishes with Dan on his affection for the George Foreman grill, the dessert that endeared him to SZA, and why he’s like a duck on a pond.

    If you want to win a copy of Open Wide, sign up for our newsletter by May 24. If you’re already on our mailing list, you’re already entered to win. Open to US and Canada addresses only.

    On Thursday, May 9, Dan will be teaming up with Café Mars in Brooklyn for a seated dinner featuring dishes inspired by Anything’s Pastable. See the full menu here. Anything’s Pastable will be for sale and Dan will be there to chat and sign copies. Reserve your spot here (scroll down to Experiences). One night only! 

    Can’t make it to Brooklyn? You can catch Dan the following week, Thursday, May 16. He will be hosting a virtual cooking class with Milk Street. As we get ready for summer, he will be featuring two super flavorful, super easy dishes from the chapter of Anything’s Pastable entitled, “Pasta Salads Redeemed: Fresh and Bright, Hold The Mayo.” Watch Dan cook or cook along! Get 50% off with code PASTABLE50 (only for the first 30 people). Then use code COOKWITHDAN for 15% off.

    The Sporkful production team includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Shantel Holder, Nora Ritchie, and Jared O'Connell.

    Transcript available at www.sporkful.com.

    29 April 2024, 9:55 am
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