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Category: HowStuffWorks

The Science of Twinkies
Faye Flam
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This week the Gen. Petraeus scandal is being eclipsed by Twinkies. Even Paul Krugman’s New York Times column this morning lead off with the most famous of the Hostess products. I was sure someone would pick up a science angle on the endangered 20th century lunchbox staple and poster-cake for junk...

This week the Gen. Petraeus scandal is being eclipsed by Twinkies. Even Paul Krugman’s New York Times column this morning lead off with the most famous of the Hostess products. I was sure someone would pick up a science angle on the endangered 20th century lunchbox staple and poster-cake for junk food. A search revealed hundreds of stories and some amazing facts – the original Twinkie filling was banana flavored and became vanilla thanks to fruit rationing during World War II.

Most of the writing was just nostalgic waxing, but one scientifically-oriented piece showed up by Ed Grabianowski in HowStuffWork. In How Twinkies Work, you can learn that there’s only one preservative in a Twinkie, a mold-inhibitor. But the little cakes...