Most inventors strive for weeks, months, or years to perfect their products. (Thomas Edison tried thousands of different light bulb filaments before arriving at the ideal mixture of tungsten.) But sometimes, brilliance strikes by accident. Here's a salute to the scientists, chefs, and everyday folk who stumbled upon greatness – and, more important, shared their mistakes with the world.UPDATE: After great reader feedback, we've added five additional accidental inventions: Stainless steel, plastic, ice cream cones, Post-it Notes, and matches.
When culinary thoughts turn southward toward Louisiana and Mardi Gras, satisfy hearty appetites with this New Orleans tradition of slow-cooked meat and vegetables served over creamy grits.
For a light summer supper, serve up a dish of lady peas and tuck a few buttermilk hoe cakes alongside.
Elements of two classic comfort foods combine in satisfying braised veal shanks with white beans.
Asia Pulp & Paper Co. has promised to stop using wood from Indonesia's natural forests. Unprecedented market pressures, driven in part by Barbie and Mickey Mouse, helped.
Malaysian wildlife officials say 14 dead pygmy elephants were found last month in Borneo, apparently poisoned by chemicals used by farmers on the country's massive palm-oil plantations.