We have completed maintenance on DiscoverMagazine.com and action may be required on your account. Learn More

Thanksgiving Dinner in Space!

By Melissa Lafsky
Nov 26, 2008 10:42 PMNov 5, 2019 8:47 AM


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

Tomorrow, most of America will gather in front of a table to ingest massive quantities of carb- and fat-driven foodstuffs. But what about the few Americans currently in space? Not to worry: Lest the seven astronauts aboard the space shuttle Endeavour go without their requisite servings of turkey, stuffing, and candied yams, NASA is providing a Thanksgiving meal. The six Americans on board and one Russian—who, in the spirit of inclusion, is also joining the meal—will float through their feast (literally), eating their feast from individual pouches with Velcro tags, which they can affix to metal trays that can be attached to their laps or the wall. Each tray is equipped with a tethered spoon, fork, knife, and pair of scissors for cutting open the food pouches. While the flavor ranges in space are somewhat limited, NASA works hard to engineer a varied menu. Of course, the results aren't always so successful, according to reports:

A week before Thanksgiving, NASA gave reporters a taste-test of the astronauts' holiday dinner. The smoked turkey was slightly stiffer than deli meat, like after it has been left in the refrigerator a week past its expiration date. The candied yams had a syrupy sweetness outside that dissolved into blandness in the middle. The green beans with mushrooms tasted like they have been frozen and then microwaved to an inch of their life.

The saving grace was a sublime cranapple dessert. There was a tartness to the apples and sweetness to the cranberries mixed with pecans and syrup in a dish that resembles cobbler filling.

Well, at least the meal can end on a high note. Related: Disco: Astronaut Taste Test: The Truth about Water from Recycled Urine and Sweat Disco: International Space Station Gets New Toilet, Fridge, and BloggerImage: iStockphoto

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month

Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

1 free articleSubscribe
Discover Magazine Logo
Want more?

Keep reading for as low as $1.99!


Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 40% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2024 Kalmbach Media Co.