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Space food has come a long way since John Glenn choked down bite-sized cubes, freeze dried foods, and semi-liquids in aluminum toothpaste-type tubes to become the first human to eat a meal in space*. Hopefully, by the time the space elevator is built, there will be space farms and zero-gravity food preparation technology that better approximate eating on Earth (except for that floating thing).

A recent European Space Agency (Quicktime/WMP) video "gives an overview of the meals served on the ISS on normal days and at special occasions [and] also outlines the underlying nutritional and psychological factors that determine what astronauts [eat] in orbit."

These guys are eating "a Sicilian starter followed by roast quail in a wine sauce and rice pudding with dried fruit." It sounds better than my menu for today but, due to the stress of the small environment and work they do, food is the main source of relaxation and joy for International Space Station crew according to ESA astronaut Thomas Reiter who moderates a report about food for some experts on the ground in this video.

Oh, and the answer to the question posed in the headline? Velcro, baby, Velcro.


*Yuri Gagarin did test food and water samples experimentally but his single-orbit flight did not require a meal.

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