|Handbreadth||8cm||4 thumb-breadths||Credit Card|
|Handspan||24cm||3 handbreadths||12 thumb-breadths||11 Piano Keys|
|Cubit (Large)||48cm||2 handspans||6 handbreadths||Ruler, Carry-on luggage|
|Short Cubit||40 cm||5 handbreadths||16 inches||Pizza|
Eruvin Daf reference
|1 handbreadth||Credit card||8cm/3.1”||4, 5|
|3 handbreadths||11 Piano Keys||24cm/9″||4, 5, 9|
|4 handbreadths||Face shield||32cm/12.6”||3, 4, 5, 6, 9|
|4 x 4 handbreadths||Chess board||32 x 32cm/12.6”||9|
|9 handbreadths||Traffic cone||72cm/28”||4|
|10 handbreadths||Long shoehorn||80cm/31.5”||3, 4, 5, 8|
|Log||Drinking Glass||310 millilitres/10.5 fl oz||4|
|1 cubit||Carry-on luggage||48cm/18″||4, 9|
|4 cubits||Bed or Grizzly Bear||192cm/6.25’ (feet)||3, 5, 8, 9|
|5 cubits||Patio Dining Table||240cm/7.9′ (feet)||2|
|10 cubits||Conference Table||480cm/15.7’ (feet)||2, 5, 6, 8, 9|
|12 cubits||Large LED-Wall Screen||576cm/19’ (feet)||3|
|15 cubits||Shuttle Bus||720cm/23.6′ (feet)||2|
|20 cubits||Caravan Awning||960cm/31.5’ (feet)||2, 3, 5|
|40 cubits||Articulated Bus||1920cm/60′ (feet)||2, 3|
|se’a||Stock Pot||7.3L/1.9 gallons|
|40 se’as||Hot water heater (tank)||288L/76 gallons||4|
|Kav||Quart of fruit||1.2 litre/1.1 dry quart||29|
|Maneh||Pound of Butter||500 g/1lb/500ml/2cups||29|
|Cor/Kor||55 gallon drum||220L/55 gal/30 se’as||36|
Scientists have been formulating “Frankenfoods” for decades now. There is validity to a certain amount of genetic modification; after all, we wouldn’t have today’s plump corn or watermelons or eggplants without selective breeding by ambitious (and hungry!) farmers over centuries. Nowadays, the GMOs we hear most about involving splicing genes from one incongruous species to another, which freaks some consumers out. But the unifying force in most of these attempts is the deliberate intention — which makes the news that scientists have accidentally created a new type of fish hybrid in an effort to save one of the parent species all the more surprising!
The task they set out to do was bolster the numbers of Russian Sturgeon, a fish prized for its caviar, but critically endangered due to overfishing, destruction of habitat, and pollution. A team of Hungarian scientists attempted asexual reproduction of the fish, using the sperm of another species, the American Paddlefish, to prompt the development of Russian Sturgeon eggs — a process known as gynogenesis.
Unfortunately, the Paddlefish and Sturgeon were genetically closer than the scientists thought, and instead of gynogenesis, good old-fashioned sexual reproduction took place, producing a hybrid now known temporarily (and cutely) as “sturddlefish.” And this may not be a bad thing:
“Each of the resulting fish look a little different, most of them bearing a stronger resemblance to the sturgeon (which was, of course, the whole idea). But if the offspring adopt the paddlefish’s dietary habits instead of the sturgeon’s, then the hybrid fish could greatly benefit the environment: Sturgeon have a diet of larger crustaceans while paddlefish feed on smaller organisms like plankton, making the latter’s diet more sustainable in the long run. (Microscopic organisms don’t have to be shipped in to feed the fish, meaning fewer carbon emissions.) Cheap diet + expensive roe = money in the bank.”
I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately about invasive species in my neck of the woods — so it’s refreshing that this particular goof in animal management might turn out well for a change. And if it leads to stability for a food fish that we humans are responsible for destabilizing, all the better!
Here at the DFC test kitchens, David is the baker, while I fall decidedly into Camp Cooking. When it comes to baking, I usually only have patience for the sampling and critique of the results! David’s chocolate chip cookies are particularly legendary: as he did with our barbecue sauce, he spent years refining his recipe, experimenting with the chip to dough ratios and finely calibrating the sugars to yield the perfect chew.
But what he hasn’t done is engineer the ingredients themselves. Leave something that “disruptive” to chocolate-chip-cookieness to Tesla senior industrial designer Remy Labesque. He moonlights as a chocolate expert and has collaborated with California chocolatier Dandelion Chocolate to create the ideal baking chip.
While his chip still involves quality chocolate, Labesque’s innovation lies in its shape. The traditional teardrop shape is an artifact of the industrial process — it’s the easiest way for a machine (or a human artisan like Dandelion’s head pastry chef Lisa Vega) to fire out hundreds of chips in one go. But Labesque thought the dense, uniform shape lacked texture and was unsuited to the flat planes of a cookie. So, he set out to reconcile his dreams of the ideal melty cookie morsel to the industrial reality — or really, vice versa. The result: a modernist-looking, flat, faceted square chip, with two balanced pairs of thin and thick edges.
“At Dandelion, the design brief was to make ‘the best chip for the experience of tasting chocolate,’ says chef Vega. Experts claim the way to do that is to let it melt on your tongue.
Each time a prototype came off the line, Vega would start baking. ‘They stay whole, but once they’re baked, the center of the chip gets soft,’ she observes, a benefit for experiencing the chocolate’s texture. Labesque designed the thin, melt-in-your-mouth edges to be sturdy enough to hold their shape in baking and not to break when the chip is unmolded. […]
Dandelion currently sells its ‘facets’ in three distinct, 70% single-origin, types: from Ecuador, Costa Rica, and Madagascar. Additional single-origin styles are planned for the future. The lengthy research and development and ingredient sourcing comes at a cost: a 17.6 oz. bag of the chips goes for $30.”
Coming from an IT background, I’m already a big proponent of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” I never thought that the chocolate chip was broke. Labesque and Vega have helped me rethink this — and I can never fault someone for following their passion, as niche and privileged ($30 USD a bag?) as it is. But none of us regular folks should let that stop our cookie perfection dreams: The original Depression-era chocolate chip cookie recipe used chopped up chocolate bars — it’s built to use what you have. A regular-shaped chip will never spoil a chocolate chip cookie, as long as you infuse the recipe with your own magic as well!