Serving Up Science

Wednesdays during All Things Considered

The series all about food: where it comes from and how it impacts our health and our planet. History buff, foodie and science writer Sheril Kirshenbaum serves up a side of science and history, explores the reasons behind the recipe, and offers some tasty tips on your favorite foods.

WKAR host Karel Vega joins Sheril for the weekly podcast and broadcast Wednesdays during All Things Considered on 90.5 FM in mid-Michigan. 

Now with video!
Serving Up Science with Sheril Kirshenbaum
at PBS Food onYouTube and in the PBS App!
New episodes every other Monday at noon 9/16/2019-11/11/2019

Produced in cooperation with Food @ MSU.

Amanda Barberena/Karel Vega

Candy, scary movies and costumes all signify that Halloween is approaching, but one important characteristic is missing: jack-o’-lanterns. On this episode of Serving Up Science, science writer Sheril Kirshenbaum and WKAR’s Karel Vega discuss the dawn of the jack-o’-lantern with the help of student reporter Amanda Barberena.

Members of the Poison Squad
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration/flickr/Public Domain

When you go to the store and pick up a gallon of milk, you're probably not worried about it being filled with formaldehyde, thanks to the FDA. However, it took some brave men to risk their health to bring food safety issues to light. On this episode of Serving Up Science, science writer Sheril Kirshenbaum and WKAR’s Karel Vega talk about the heroic act of the Poison Squad.

'Serving Up Science’ from WKAR and Michigan State University explores the reasons behind the recipe and offers tasty tips on your favorite foods

Why let meat rest between cooking and serving? It’s an important step for a juicy steak.

Watch it here now and in the PBS App

Oprah with a cow
Pixabay Creative Commons, Flickr Creative Commons

A few words were spoken and suddenly food prices plummeted. On this episode of Serving Up Science, science writer Sheril Kirshenbaum and WKAR's Karel Vega talk about the three most famous food libel cases of all time.

Wikimedia commons

Energy is inherently related to every significant challenge of the 21st century: water scarcity, inequality, national security and agriculture. On this episode of Serving Up Science, Sheril Kirshenbaum speaks with Dr. Michael Webber, the Chief Science and Technology Officer at the global energy and infrastructure services company ENGIE.

Roger McLassus / Creative Commons

Water is critically important to agriculture as well as many aspects of our lives. On this week's segment Sheril and Karel speak with Dr. Jay Famiglietti, director of the Global Institute for Water Security at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Canada about the future of water.

Scott Pohl / WKAR-MSU

In the summertime, there’s really no better way to cool off than with a nice big ice cream cone.

Imagine a time when you’ve taken a bite out of your cone when suddenly, you feel a strange sensation in your head. The sensation commonly known as brain freeze.

grongar / Creative Commons

When it’s time to pick up eggs at the supermarket, making a choice can be overwhelming. Should you be buying cage-free or free range? Organic or conventional? What is the difference between all of the terms you see on the carton?

Creative Commons / Pixabay

Every chef has their own technique when it comes to cooking, roasting, broiling or grilling for the best flavor, but most agree on one important step – meat should rest after cooking and before slicing.

Serving Up Science, MSU Science Festival
Reginald Hardwick / WKAR-MSU

WKAR's podcast "Serving Up Science" taught dozens of people about the science behind taste. It was the final signature event of Michigan State University's seventh annual Science Festival.

Serving Up Science MSU Science Festival
MSU Science Festival / Graphic by Amanda Barberena

Are you a supertaster? You can find out at Serving Up Science's live show this weekend. Sheril and Karel will be at the Kellogg Center on Saturday, April 20 as the last show during the Michigan State University Science Festival this year.


Saturday, April 20 at 7:00pm-8:00pm Kellogg Hotel | WKAR will be talking all things science! 

Public Domain

Most people know the four main senses of taste: sweet, sour, bitter, and salty. But there’s also a fifth sense, which is more complex. Umami.

Pixabay Creative Commons

On this week's episode of Serving Up Science, science writer Sheril Kirshenbaum and WKAR's Karel Vega discuss the repercussions of swill milk during the 1850's.