Pour One Out, Washington Post Cancels Peeps Contest (Photos)

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By Cooking Panda

We are so sorry to break it to anyone who lives for The Washington Post’s annual springtime Peeps contest, but the colorful marshmallow diorama competition has gotten the ax this year.

The Post editors announced on March 7 that their paper would no longer host the decade-old campy event that shows sugary marshmallow scenes ranging from jubilant to macabre. They have also discontinued the Post Hunt, an annual event in Washington that is something between a puzzle and a scavenger hunt, as they could not find a sponsor.

“For 10 years The Washington Post featured a Peeps contest, in which people from all over created dioramas depicting scenes that reflected the country as they saw it, but populated with marshmallow bunnies and chicks,” the editors wrote. “Hard journalism this was not, but for us the contest offered its own sweet rewards. As fewer submissions began to come in, though, echoing the decline in readership of this feature, we knew that it was time to let bunnies be free again, and we have ended the Peeps contest run.”

The editorial explained that the Hunt was over “for now” but did not specify whether it would be back in 2018 or beyond, saying only that they wished “to thank all the many people who puzzled along with us and devoted to it so much energy and support.”

“At the magazine, we always want to make the deepest connection with readers we can,” they added.

From a yellow and pink Marilyn Monroe marshmallow frozen in mid-dance to a Twinkie funeral, from “NightPeep” at the Diner to the 2010 Chilean mine rescue, these wacky, fun and socially poignant sugary dioramas have been delighting readers for years, and we can only hope that we see something as wonderful as this emerge in our lifetime.

It looks like we aren’t the only ones mourning the loss of the exciting competition, either.

We’ll miss you, Peeps contest.

Sources: The Washington Post (2), Gene Park/Twitter / Photo Credit: Michelle Nijhuis‏/Twitter, Becky Hammer/Twitter

Tags: food art, Peeps competition, peeps diorama, Post Hunt, Washington Post Peeps contest
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Woman Celebrates Christmas By Crafting With Bacon (Photos)

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By Cooking Panda

Glitter and popsicle sticks are fun and all, but nothing embodies the true spirit of Christmas crafting like pigs in a blanket, according to one creative bacon lover.

When London food fan Sian Pearson and cousin Ellie were given the sole responsibility of making pigs in a blanket for Christmas dinner back in 2012, a revolutionary idea was born. To heck with throwing the little bacon-wrapped sausages on a plate and calling it a day, they thought. Something much more innovative was in store.

So they made a centerpiece out of the appetizer, Metro reports.

Above is a shot of the inaugural centerpiece: a pork-heavy nativity scene featuring baby Jesus lying in a Yorkshire pudding manger, three wise men wearing foil crowns, animals and a bacon stable expertly held together with toothpicks.

With the scene proving to be such a hit, why stop there? Pearson has since made a new pigs-in-blankets piece each year, like this one in 2013.

The work of art depicts Santa and reindeer charging their present-stocked sleigh through a shimmery night.

The bacon was extra prominent in 2014, when Pearson made a larger than life bacon tree and bacon family sitting down to a Christmas feast.

Things got more intricate the next year with a look at the North Pole, where bacon elves wore tomato hats and assembled toys under Santa’s watchful eye. The scene sat atop a dish of fluffy mashed potatoes for a wintry effect.

While Christmas is her specialty, Pearson’s creations aren’t limited to wintertime festivities. Her meaty works are so popular that friends have requested she make them for their parties, one of which resulted in this tropical beach party scene.

Each piece takes about four hours to make, including the time it takes to cook the bacon and sausage. She said it’s all about the details, which don’t come together quickly. 

“They’re incredibly fiddly and a structural challenge,” she told Metro.

What’s in store for 2016’s creation? Pearson said that’s to be confirmed, but it’s sure to be as elaborate as ever.

Source: Metro / Photo Credit: Thad Zajdowicz/Flickr
 

Tags: bacon, Christmas, Craft, food art, pigs in a blanket
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Just When You Thought Sushi Couldn’t Get Any Prettier, Chefs Turned It Into Mosaics

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By Cooking Panda

Sushi is indisputably a gorgeous food. There’s the balance of colors from refreshing vegetables and bright pieces of fish, the sheen of Omega-3s on fresh hunks of salmon, the comforting symmetry of each slice of sushi roll. How could it get any prettier?

The Japanese figured it out: It’s by transforming sushi into mosaics.

Foodies and Instagrammers are going nuts over the trend, which is pulled off by meticulously slicing, positioning and decorating pieces of sushi until they resemble the intricate tiles of a mosaic.

Here are a few examples of the art to tickle your fancy.

Check out the basket-weaved cucumbers on this square number. It would make the perfect lunch on a busy Monday, when only delicious and aesthetically pleasing food can numb the pain of the weekend you left behind. 

A photo posted by Chinami (@chinamisakamoto) on

Photos like these confirm our belief that Instagram’s new zoom feature was made for food. This artist’s intricate garnishes show that a little leaf goes a long way. 

Here’s a more approachable yet attractive mosaic, just in case you want to try your hand at creating a sushi craft at home.

A photo posted by Cake (@perhotsky) on

No words, only wows.

A photo posted by Chinami (@chinamisakamoto) on

Art has no rules, and neither do sushi mosaics. This is beautiful, but all we want to do is pluck off a round sushi ball for ourselves.

Nothing says “I love you” like a heart-shaped arrangement of fish, rice and veggies, am I right?

A photo posted by Rå Sushi (@raasushi) on

Sushi mosaics aren’t limited to single plates; in fact, it’s best if they fill an entire table and are served buffet-style.

Interested in trying out some sushi mosaics with creative recipes at home? Give it a shot with our takes on sushi here and here

Featured Photo Credit: tsukicook/Instagram via Foodbeast

Tags: food art, instagram, japanese food, mosaic, sushi
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This Infuriating Pancake Video Promises Splendor, But Never Delivers (Video)

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By Cooking Panda

There is nothing more irritating than being promised something glorious, and then never receiving it (video below).

Lately, the internet has been blowing up with fun and quirky food videos.

Cooking Panda, of course, has fun and instructional videos for how to construct delicious meals. But some home users have, of late, made videos showcasing some pretty amazing pancake art creations.

Perhaps that’s why this video is so infuriating!

Per Delish, Facebook user Mystikal uploaded a video on Aug. 31 that, at first glance, appears to show viewers some seriously interesting pancake creations.

“You won’t believe what’s on the other side of this pancake” the still of the video reads, accompanied by the picture of a pancake waiting to be flipped over.

However, after clicking play, it becomes eventually clear that you never figure out what’s on the other side of the pancake.

Whoever created the video actually made it loop so that before the fantastic, mysterious pancake art is revealed, the video just reverts back to the very beginning.

It is a sad cycle of hope, excitement, and ultimate disappointment.

The video, which has garnered over 9.6 million views as of Sept. 9, has also been shared more than 90,000 times since being uploaded last week.

Watch below to experience the excruciating disappointment for yourself:

Source: Delish / Photo credit: Handy Food

Tags: Facebook, food art, pancake, video
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Mom Makes Daughter’s Lunches Look Like Cartoon Characters To Help Her Adjust To New School (Photos)

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By Cooking Panda

Candace Ku’s daughter opens her lunch box each day to find not just Chinese food — but her favorite cartoon characters made of rice, pork, veggies and other ingredients. 

At school, the 11-year-old Hong Kong girl chows down on Pokemon sandwiches and Harry Potter rice plates, but she isn’t the only one who gets a kick out of her mom’s bento-box artwork. Ku’s more than 35,000 Instagram followers like and comment on her food art every day.

Harry Potter lunch to Harry Potter's fans. My first try on Harry Potter… A lot of spaces of improvement??

A photo posted by Candace Mama (@cancan_ku) on

While Ku enjoys sharing photos of her lunches, she works hard in the kitchen for her daughter’s happiness, according to the Daily Mail. When Ku and her family moved four years ago, her daughter had trouble making new friends at her new school.

“At the beginning of the school term, she came back home and told me she had no one to play with,” Ku said. “… The next day, I tried to make her a simple bear-shaped rice ball in her lunchbox, as I wanted to cheer her up on another lonely school day.

“That day, when she came back, she was so excited to tell me that so many classmates surrounded her to see her lunchbox, and she made a lot of friends. So, starting that day, I tried to make my girl more cute lunch boxes in the hope she could make more and more friends.”

Two years later, she began posting photos of the cartoon lunches online.

“Some of my fans and followers tell me that my bento makes their day,” Ku said.

“This kind of spiritual support is also a kind of motivation for me to keep working on my bento,” she added.

Ku’s 8-year-old daughter and husband also like digging in to Ku’s creations, which are apparently just as tasty as they are time-consuming to prepare. She spends hours crafting pig-themed sushi rolls and teddy-bear noodle bowls, and they spend minutes devouring them.

Rice is the magic ingredient for most of Ku’s cartoon characters, but she also uses slices of ham and cheese, carrot and broccoli shapes, and seaweed cutouts to perfect their props and facial features. Colorful veggies and protein brighten up the background.

Even breakfast gets the cartoon treatment; pancakes become smiling animal faces, and egg yolks are turned into Pikachu frog-in-a-hole toasts.

Check out Ku’s Instagram to see more than 800 crafty meals.

Source: Daily Mail / Photo credit: Candace_mama/Facebook

Tags: bento box, cartoon, food art, school lunch
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We Want To Bite Into These Stunning Lego Food Creations

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By Cooking Panda

We’ve never really had the urge to eat plastic – until now.

There are some pretty awesome Lego creations out there. From replicas of whole towns, to the Mona Lisa, to the Kennedy Space Center and Obama’s inauguration, we’ve seen some pretty cool stuff created with Legos over the years. But now, thanks to a Japanese artist known only as Tary, we’re totally salivating over these amazing Lego food replicas that look good enough to eat.

Don’t believe us? See for yourself.

Seriously, take a look at this Lego pizza, complete with cheese dripping off of it, straight from Tary’s popular Twitter page:

Who wouldn’t want to eat this bento box with cute Lego chopsticks?

Or maybe you want a bowl of rice topped with shrimp tempura?

We can’t promise we won’t try to take a big bite out of that.

Tary does gingerbread houses too, in case you are wondering.

How about a cupcake topped with fruit for dessert?

The artist has had some success at several competitions recently, including one with ClickBrick, where they placed first, but Tary’s real acclaim has come from Twitter, where they have more than 4,000 followers with whom the drool-worthy Lego food replicas have gone viral, according to the Daily Mail.

We are totally transfixed by the intricacies of Tary’s creations.

Look at that melted ice cream and tell us you don’t feel a little bit sad.

Tary does fruit too! Check out this banana:

And this apple:

Don’t forget about this stunning broccoli that might make you actually want to eat your vegetables:

Plastic has never looked so good.

Sources: Twitter, Hongkiat, Daily Mail / Photo credit: nobu_tary/Twitter via Daily Mail

Tags: food art, foodporn, Lego, Lego pizza, viral food
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