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JoJo Potato Wedges

When Melissa was growing up in Tacoma, Washington, she’d walk to the corner store, where she’d pick up a corn dog and a bag of jo jos, a term for soft potato wedges with the skin left on. Researcher Barry Popik has dug up a story that...

Spanish Idioms

In English, if someone’s terrified, we might say they are shaking like a leaf. In Spanish, the phrase is temblar como un flan, or to tremble like a flan, the dessert dish. The Spanish phrase darle la vuelta a la tortilla literally means to...

All Verklempt

Of all the letters in the alphabet, which two or three are your favorites? If your short list includes one or more of your initials, that’s no accident. Psychological research shows we’re drawn to the letters in our name. • If you doubt...

Bruschetta Pronunciation

Bruschetta is the Italian bread soaked with olive oil and topped with savory ingredients. But how do you pronounce it? With a k sound or a sh sound? Although there are two widespread pronunciations, because it’s not fully anglicized...

Hummuses

The plural of hummus isn’t easy to pin down, because although the word’s ending looks like a Latin singular, it’s actually Arabic. For waiters and party hosts serving multiple plates of hummus, it’s not wrong to say hummuses...