June 2009

What Weird Family Foods Did You Grow Up Thinking Were Normal?

Nut-studded cheese ball from lisa_eglinton on Flickr There's a great discussion going on over at Chowhound about family foods that we thought were normal... until we moved out of the house. A few highlights so far: chili served with peanut butter, Cap'n Crunch with whipped cream, chicken soup with a side of mayo, Wonder bread with sour cream and corn syrup, and hot Jell-O. What weird family foods did you grow up with?... More

Photo of the Day: Apricots In Still Life

Something about apricots begs to be photographed—perhaps it's their vibrant colors, or delicate fuzz, or the smattering of freckles across their blushing cheeks. These Northern Californian beauties are brought to you by the superb photographic eye of Jeeyon Shim. A few more apricot money shots, after the jump.... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Simplicity Reigns Supreme: Many chefs in Chicago—the land of Alinea, Moto, and Graham Elliot—are settling back down to simpler fare. [Gourmet] Berry Tasty: Fresh berries, in season now, make desserts easy. [Seattle Times] Mind Over Marketing: Investigating consumer spending behavior, not as easily swayed as once thought. [NYT] Singles Scene: More than half the attendees at the Taste Of Chicago food festival (which runs through July 5) are single. [Tribune] VIP Envy : Does giving some diners VIP treatment sow discontent? Alinea's Grant Achatz weighs in. [Atlantic Food] Plates From Puerto Rico: Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor's favorite Caribbean eats. [Houston Chronicle] Transformers: Blog makes over fast food items into dishes that would look at home in a fancy restaurant.... More

'The Dictionary of Modern Gastronomy'

We're thoroughly enjoying The Food Section's Dictionary of Modern Gastronomy, which defines recently coined cooking- and food-related terms that have made it into the food-world lexicon—and maybe the mainstream one as well. Example: Goodfellas thin is the "measurement of a slice of garlic cut extremely thin using a razor blade." [via Village Voice]... More

Snapshots from the UK: Purple Sprouting Broccoli

I love nothing more than unusual vegetables. It’s as if you turned the nose on a talking doorknob and emerged into a secret garden. I get a secret thrill when I buy orange cauliflower or purple artichokes. As a matter of fact, it seems that almost every vegetable comes in some rare purple variety: artichokes, asparagus, carrots, peppers, and, now, indigenous to Britain, broccoli. The British take great pride in serving and selling what is often referred to as the “best of Britain”—produce and livestock that is native to Britain, raised by British farmers, and served to British (or, in my case, American) consumers. Purple sprouting broccoli is one such vegetable, one which seasonally graces both the fancy restaurant... More

Serious Green: Food Independence Day

Here at Serious Eats we love being able to fulfill a commitment just by eating a delicious meal. Kitchen Gardeners International (the same people who successfully led the charge for a White House Kitchen Garden) are now running a campaign to encourage local and sustainable eating on the Fourth of July. So far, more than 5,000 individuals have pledged to eat a meal made with local food on July 4. The "Food Independence Day" petition also asks the nation's 50 governors to participate and share what they will be eating. The petition reads: "As residents of your states and by our signatures below, we pledge to join you in this celebration of edible independence by eating healthy and delicious foods... More

Meet & Eat: Chichi Wang, Serious Eats Intern

Note: There's another intern in our midst! Chichi Wang has already impressed us with the first installment of her Serious Eats series, The Nasty Bits, and we're expecting a whole lot more. Say hello to Chichi! Name: Chichi Wang Location: New York City Occupation: I eat, I write, I repeat. To make money and get health insurance, I work for a corporation I'd rather not discuss. URL: chalkboardfridge.blogspot.com Guilty pleasures? I don't think there's such a thing. In moderation, all pleasures are by nature good for one's well-being. That being said, I have a huge weakness for fried dough in large quantities--beignets, Chinese cruellers, sopapillas--if it's fried and contains flour, I'm there. Describe your perfect meal. Pounds of live Dungeness... More

Make Your Own Umeshu and Biwashu, Japanese Plum Wine and Loquat Liqueur

Plum wine a-steepin'. Photograph from Umamimart Fermentation is no easy feat, and at-home alcohol projects tend to be pretty tricky. But since these fruit liqueurs start with an alcoholic base such as vodka or soju, they’re a cinch to make yourself. Learn how to make umeshu (plum wine) at Delicious Coma, or try your hand at biwashu (loquat liqueur) with these instructions from Umamimart.... More

Video: Awkward Orderer

Ordering can be a lot of pressure. When I haven't made up my mind and the waiter is slowly circling around the table towards me, I feel it. There's so much to consider: double-ordering, price, recommended dishes, and more. Because I frequently have a difficult time making my own mind up when I go out to eat, I can sympathize with the guy in this video. It all gets off on the wrong foot when the waiter says, "Have a nice meal," and the boyfriend awkwardly quips back, "You too." From there, things quickly become hilariously uncomfortable. See for yourself, after the jump.... More

Market Scene: A New Market in Town

It was 8:15 a.m. and the market had been open for fifteen minutes. I had arrived early for a specific reason: to purchase the prized sour cherry. I realize that sour cherries are prevalent around Michigan and the Midwest, but for Californians, it's a treat to get fresh sour cherries. They are about the size of the tip of my pinky and perfect for pickling and brandying. I was still waking up, and was not prepared for the aggression of the other customers who had arrived early for the same reason as I had. One woman brought an empty cardboard box that was carefully lined with paper towels to carry home her cargo. I had to physically make a... More

Served: (More) Lessons Learned

I blog by day and wait tables in a New York City restaurant by night. I'm excited to bring you Served, dispatches from the front of the house. Enjoy! Almost a year ago, I wrote about some of the lessons I learned while waiting tables. Since then, I like to think I’ve acquired some more waiterly wisdom. Ask for Help Maybe I am running to fill up Table 6’s empty water glasses, but there is no water in the pitchers and Table 9 needs some bread and a crowd rushes through the door. When I walk by Table 6 a few minutes later, their glasses are miraculously full. I’ve thanked my fellow waiters a million times for saving my ass.... More

Peach And Chocolate Chip Pancakes

Bananas, blueberries, and apples are all pretty standard pancake additions, so why not peaches? Olga at Mango & Tomato stirs cubed ripe peaches and mini chocolate chips into her usual pancake batter. It's pretty hard to look at this picture and not smile. We're getting into stone fruit season—any other peachy breakfasts out there?... More

Struggling Chef on Last Night's 'Law & Order: Criminal Intent'

Last night's episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent ("Salome in Manhattan") featured a plot revolving around a young, once-hot chef struggling to make a comeback while biding his time as host of a morning cooking spot on a local TV station. His girlfriend (and socialite daughter of a possible investor) is murdered, and detectives Wheeler and Nichols* catch the case. While there wasn't as much cheffage as I would have liked (look to "Death Roe" [Season 4, Episode 15] for a more chef-heavy—and dark—episode), the show did feature enough NYC restaurant-world verisimilitude to entertain. There's the young chef whose first restaurant was critically acclaimed but financially doomed, thanks to a bumbling business partner. There's a hip-hop star turned... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Star-Spangled Social: Tips for creating the ultimate July 4th party. [Epi-Log] Plum-Apricot Hybrid: Pluots are in season. [SF Chronicle] Fatso Salads: Some supermarket salads contain 855 calories and 66.3 fat grams—that's worse than a Big Mac. [Independent] Stick Figures: Pancetta, mozzarella, veggies, some sticks, and a grill. [AFC] Taste Fluency: Writing tasting notes is part science, part art. [Seattle Times] Le Big Mac: France is now McDonald's second most profitable market in the world. [Telegraph] Grasshoppers Attack: Western Utah is overrun with the critters. [LA Times] Inedible Fruit: Melbourne-based artist Anne Middleton captures dew-drenched strawberries on canvas. [Lost at E Minor]... More

Fresh Food on TV: Weekday Edition

With all the channels on broadcast TV and cable—and the inevitable episode repeats—it's hard to sort out what's new or worthwhile. Let us sort it out for you so you don't miss anything worth watching. Times may vary with region; check your local listings for exact hour and channels. Monday (June 29) Good Eats (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "Tender Is the Pork." Pork tenderloin as a substitute for chicken. (repeat) 8 p.m. ET, Food Network Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "Comfort Cookin." Comfort food in Arizona, San Francisco, and Milwaukee. 10 p.m. ET, Food Network... More

Great Moments in Cinema Ruined by Cookies

A fairly self-explanatory article from McSweeney's: Great Moments in Cinema Ruined by Cookies. Take that memorable scene in The Godfather where Jack Woltz finds a severed horse head under his sheets. Now replace the head with a plate of cookies. It's just not the same.... More

Snapshots from South Korea: Electronic Menu Console Helps Tourists Order Food

Last month I visited Seoul, South Korea, Here's a look at something I ate from my trip. For more, check out the rest of my Snapshots from South Korea. For a city where most people don't speak English, Seoul does a good job (and seems to be constantly trying to improve) accommodating English-speaking tourists and expats. Metro announcements are made in Korean and English, streets signs have English translations, and every taxi has a sticker with a phone number you can call if you need a translator. But what if you're clueless about Korean food? Tourists without a Korean speaker by their side may end up ordering something they don't like, or forgo a meal altogether since they can't read... More

Last Week's Contest Winners

Cook the Book: L.A.'s Original Farmers Market Cookbook: bisbee, katief, bibliothecaire, laur_uic, and rhino876. Winners have been notified by email and also appear on our Contest Winners page. Thanks to all who entered.... More

Sweet Green's Sweetflow Mobile, a Frozen Yogurt Truck in D.C.

At one point, it seemed insane that television screens could go into cars. But this is so much cooler than watching a movie from the backseat—in the Sweetflow Mobile, from Washington D.C.-based mini salad chain Sweet Green, you can pull down on a frozen yogurt nozzle in the backseat. (Or watch from outside as a trained nozzle-puller does it.) The mobile frozen yogurt truck was custom-built in Europe, arrived by boat, and first started roaming around the city in early June. As with other street vendors, Sweetflow Mobile is sending updated information on the truck's whereabouts via Twitter (@sweetflowmobile). Last week, it cruised by Eastern Market's grand re-opening, the 9:30 Club after a Michael Jackson tribute band played, and... More

Gum Alert, a Gum Rating Blog

Photograph from Donnaphoto on Flickr Here's a blog for all the discerning gum chewers out there. Gum Alert rates gums on flavor, texture, and overall gum goodness. I will admit that it wasn't until I saw this blog that I realized I must be a total gum noob. Orbit Mist Peppermint Spray? Wrigley's 5 Rain? Trident Splash Citrus with Blackberry? Who knew all these gum permutations even existed? And what does rain taste like? If nothing else, I applaud this search for the "ultimate in mastication stimulation." [via Neatorama]... More

Cook the Book: 'Bobby Flay's Burgers, Fries & Shakes'

Do you ever wonder what chefs eat? You'd think that with access to a well-stocked walk-in and state-of-the-art kitchen they would eat exceptionally well, on par or better than the food that we pay for in their restaurants. You might think that it is all white truffles, foie gras, and vintage Bordeaux—but the reality is a bit bleaker. Chefs are usually too busy preparing for service to sit down to a proper meal. Days start early, end late, and there is no lunch hour. When the clock strikes 10 or 11 p.m., or later depending on what time the restaurant closes, chances are the people who've made your dinner have had nothing more than a few spoonfuls of food (to... More

Video: Extreme Rice

In the same vein as Extreme PB&J Sandwich Making and Extreme Toothbrushing comes Extreme Rice. I mean, EXTREME RICE! BECAUSE PART OF BEING EXTREME IS SHOUTING ALL THE TIME! AND CRUSHING RICE PLANTS WITH YOUR BARE HANDS! AND WHITENING THE GRAINS WITH HOUSEHOLD BLEACH! AND MORE! WATCH THE VIDEO AFTER THE JUMP! [Warning: not suitable for those traumatized by excessive shouting.]... More

What's the Prettiest Dessert You've Ever Seen?

Photograph by Lance Iversen for The San Francisco Chronicle At the Blue Bottle Coffee Bar, in the Rooftop Garden at the San Francisco MOMA, pastry chef Caitlin Williams Freeman sculpts desserts that model the paintings within the museum—like the Piet Mondrian-style cake pictured above. Food is often called a form of art, but this cake is pretty incredible. What's the prettiest dessert that you've ever seen?... More

'The Polymer Clay Cookbook,' a Cookbook Devoted to Inedible Food Jewelry

Buttered toast necklace. Photographs from inediblejewelry on Flickr There's a very slim market for cookbooks involving ingredients that are not only tasteless but unavailable at grocery stores, and tinier than a dime. The shelf life of this food, however, is indefinite, and it looks cool with pretty much any outfit (as opposed to ketchup stains or coffee dribbles). Jessica and Susan Partain have been making miniature, inedible food for nearly 20 years. It all started when they were kids and discovered polymer clay at the craft store. With so many colors to play with, they crafted teeny chocolate-chip cookies, burgers, apples, and more. (They admit to raising some pretty well-fed dolls.) Flash forward to now—the two have made a... More

The Greek Non-Breakfast

Photograph from steve.wilde on Flickr I'm headed to Greece tomorrow, and was curious what I'd be eating for breakfast over the course of ten mornings. A little research proved that Greeks don't really do breakfast given the late lunching (between 3 and 4 p.m.) and dinnering (after 9 p.m.). Coffee sweetened with honey and a cigarette seems pretty standard, and if food has to be involved, then maybe a piece of pita or bowl of yogurt. This photographer went for DIY pita sandwiches, one with honey, and the other with ham and cheese, when on the Greek isle of Rhodes. Anything else I should look forward to? Related Greek Yogurt - Recommendations? [Talk] Greek Lamb and Olive Burgers with... More

Cute, Morbid Sushi Figures

It haunts you with its sad, droopy, suffering-rich eyes. Photograph from o-no-co.com The sushi-inspired vinyl toys from O-No Food Company feature two sad tentacled creatures whose limbs have been cut off for your sushi-eating pleasure. They're kind of cute and kind of...really sad. To be more specific, each one contains 176g of sadness, according to their nutritional facts. Designed by artist Andrew Bell, these toys are based off his print "Never Look Back." [via notcot.org] Related: Do Not Eat These Monsters... More

Snapshots from the UK: Wagamama's Defunct #28 (Chili Mushroom Ramen)

"Is my ramen some third grader who's no good at dodgeball and gets picked last for the team?" The now defunct Chili Mushroom Ramen. Do you have that one thing, that favorite thing, on that one menu that you always order? You go back to that same restaurant for that same dish, year in and year out. But would you go back if that dish was brutally, surreptitiously stricken from the menu one dark night when no one is around to save it? This is the story of how I was separated, cruelly, from my Chili Mushroom Ramen: #28 at Wagamama. Wagamama is a ubiquitous British noodle house chain, at which customers seat themselves up and down clean communal tables... More

This Week in Eating Out

The Haute Dogs of the Moment: Ed Levine rounds up the various reinventions of the hot dog currently sweeping New York City. These ain't your mama's hot dogs. Korean Pork Mountains: Robyn Lee enjoys a Korean barbecue pork fest at Galmaegi-sal Jeonmun in Seoul, South Korea. Delicious and Professional: Damon Gambuto reviews Nick & Stef's Steakhouse and finds a well-executed burger once all the extraneous toppings are done away with. The superb shoestring and sweet potato fries only add to the experience. Strict Specialty Pizza: La Casa Pizzaria of Omaha, Nebraska, doesn't allow any changes to its specialty pizzas, but Daniel Zemans still finds something special in its regular thin crust pizza.... More

This Week in Recipes

Zesty Zucchini: Nick Kindelsperger whips up zucchini galettes with a touch of cumin for a hint of "mysterious lingering spice." Summertime Spaghetti: Reminisce and refresh with Kerry Saretsky and her spaghetti with pistachio pistou, fava beans, and mint. Chorizo at Home: If you have five minutes you can make Ed Levine happy by making your own chorizo. Singaporean Street Food: Caroline Russock introduces us to mee goreng, a dish of spicy stir-fried noodles topped with a fried egg. A Condiment for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner: Serious Heat's Andrea Lynn loves Padma's chile-honey butter spread on toast, over fried eggs, and as a garnish for fish. Chicken a Go Go: Try Blake Royer's simple take on the Filipino dish of... More

The Tornado Potato Touches Down in the U.S.

Remember the tornado potato? That strange spiral-cut potato that's skewered and deep-fried? The street-food treat found in Seoul, South Korea? It did a whirlwind tour of the web in 2007, when the blog Superlocal posted a photo of it. (And, yes, we blogged it, too.) It looks like the tornado potato has finally made it Stateside. It'll be available at the Minnesota State Fair this year (August 27 through Labor Day), but I caught sight of one this week on the boardwalk in Wildwood, New Jersey, which is basically all state-fair food all the time (at least during the summer tourist season). [What it looks like, after the jump ...]... More

This Week's Tasty 10

According to our handy site-metering utility, the top 10 most delicious items across the Serious Eats family of sites this week were ... 1. Egg in Toast: What Do You Call It? "An egg fried in the center of a piece of bread—a simple preparation that elevates the union of my two favorite breakfast food groups, eggs and toast, to a whole new level. I've seen this delicious combination referred to as: Popeye, egg in a basket, toad in the hole, and the more literal eggs-in-toast." What do you call it? 2. Serious Green: Plastic-Less Ways to Transport Your Lunch "If you do decide to take your own lunch to work (or maybe you already are) don’t just shove your... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Jesus Juice: New York’s City Winery is holding a Michael Jackson tribute wine-and-music pairing, and not everyone is thrilled. [Eater] ‘All Natural’?: Snapple faces a lawsuit over the use of the term, with consumers contending that high-fructose corn syrup disqualifies it. [Menupages Boston] Top 10 Tacos: Robert Sistema lists his New York picks, weighted heavily (not surprisingly) towards the outer boroughs. [Fork In The Road] Dot Yum: Wolfgang Puck is seeking sole ownership of the top-level domain name “.food”. [WSJ] Re-Market: Eastern Market reopened today in DC. [WP]... More

Langos, Deep Fried Flatbread and Hungary's 'Common Currency of Taste'

One moment, I didn't know anything about Hungarian cuisine; the next moment, all I could think about was lángos (pronounced LAHN-gosh), deep fried Hungarian flatbread commonly rubbed with garlic and topped with sour cream. Food blogger James Boo of The Eaten Path, who recently visited Budapest, describes this savory yeast doughnut as "the common currency of taste," what pizza is to New York City and hot dogs are to Chicago. The lángos in the photo was deep fried in lard and topped with sour cream and sauerkraut. Boo's description says, The resulting behemoth of fats and flavors was admittedly not as delicious as the fresh, everyday Lángos from the roadside stand; nevertheless, it was a behemoth. The edges were crunchier,... More

NomTV: Weekend Edition

With all the channels on broadcast TV and cable—and the inevitable episode repeats—it's hard to sort out what's new or worthwhile. Let us sort it out for you so you don't miss anything worth watching. Times may vary with region; check your local listings for exact hour and channels. Saturday (June 27) Today Show: Hot dog and burger taste test. 7 a.m. ET, NBC Secrets of a Restaurant Chef (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "The Secret to Gnocchi." Anne shows how to make gnocchi and cherry clafoutis. 10:30 a.m. ET, Food Network Giada at Home (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "More Cheese Please." Giada shares three cheese recipes. 1 p.m. ET, Food Network Barefoot Contessa (warning,... More

Happy Birthday to the Bar Code

Break out the cake and party favors; it's the bar code's 35th birthday. Those alternating black and white bars weren't always around to make our shopping experiences easier. The New York Times celebrates the bar code's birthday with some information behind the development and gradual use of this "technological staple of everyday life." You can add this little tidbit to your trivia database: On June 26, 1974, the first bar code was read off a 67¢ 10-pack of Juicy Fruit gum.... More

Serious Reads: ‘Au Revoir To All That’

"Romance is as integral to French cuisine as butter, and any book on the subject would be soulless without it." Au Revoir To All That Food, Wine, and the End of France Author: Michael Steinberger Get It: Hardcover on Amazon Read It: Preview on Slate.com Recommended Read? YesThe sun is setting on the French gastronomic empire, Michael Steinberger contends in Au Revoir To All That: Food, Wine, and the End of France. Speaking ill of the French is tantamount to heresy in many gourmet circles, but Steinberger isn’t cowed. The kitchens of Paris and Avignon are not what they once were, and he wants to know why. With a title that straddles the sentimental and the apocalyptic, Steinberger steers clear... More

Look Who's Talkin': Comments, Quips, and Tips We Have Known and Loved

There's so much to keep up with in Talk that we almost can't keep up. If you're in the same boat, here's a small selection of topics and responses that have piqued our interest this week. Egg in Toast: What Do You Call It? "From my Star Wars cookbook, using two eggs, we call it 'Twin Sun Toast.'" —Cassaendra How Do You Make Your Lemonade? "The trick is to soak your lemons in warm to hot water at least half an hour. After the warm bath, go over each lemon with a cloth to get off all that wax, this is important. Juice each lemon as much as you can, but don't discard the spent outsides. In a separate container... More

Video: Room Covered in Melted Cheese

It's the fear I never had until now: to return to my hotel room and find everything—walls, ceiling, furniture, floor—covered in melted cheese. In 1999, Canadian artist Cosimo Cavallaro covered Room 114 at the Washington Jefferson Hotel in New York City in 1,000 pounds of cheese from the Swiss Cheese Foundation. I wouldn't have wanted to visit that room on a hot day. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Snapshots from South Korea: Triple Pork Barbecue at Galmaegi-sal Jeonmun

Last month I visited Seoul, South Korea, Here's a look at something I ate from my trip. For more, check out the rest of my Snapshots from South Korea. My last day in Seoul was, unfortunately, the most miserable in terms of weather. Non-stop rain meant awkwardly lugging around bags and an umbrella all day, walking around in damp shoes, and having little desire to whip out my dSLR and take photos of the gloomy city. But it ended in one of the best ways possible: with a mountain of pork. Accompanied by food bloggers Dan Gray and Fat Man Seoul, chef Rachel Yang and Soo Hyang Choi of the Institute of Traditional Korean Food, I got my wish of... More

Threadless T-Shirt Giveaway: Booty Fruit

This week Serious Eats is giving away a different food-related Threadless t-shirt each weekday! For the chance to win today's shirt, Booty Fruit (ye know—fruit with butts), just tell us in the comments: What's your favorite fruit? One person will be chosen at random among the eligible comments below. Entry is only open to U.S. residents. Comments will close Saturday, June 27, at noon ET. The standard Serious Eats contest rules apply.... More

It's a Little Quiet in This Corner

Aww. These Talk threads have few or zero replies as of today. Anyone have anything to say? Anyone ever try a beefalo burger? "FYI - beefalo = hybrid between bison and domestic cattle." Tried Duck Ramen for the first time. "I tried a tasty Duck Ramen tonight in Williamsburg at Sui Ren. Wondered what other types of ramen are popular?" Where/what should we eat in Turkey? "I am going to Istanbul, Cappadocia, and Antalya in a couple of weeks and I was wondering if any serious eaters had suggestions for restaurants?" Los Angeles - Near LMU "I am attending a conference next week in L.A. at Loyola Marymount University and would love some recommendations for good places to eat near... More

Ed Levine's Serious Diet, Week 73: Sometimes Only Dark Chocolate Malted Milk Balls Will Do: What's Your Weakness?

I learned once again this past week that falling off the serious diet wagon is still way too easy for me. It was Father's Day, in the evening, 10 p.m. to be exact. We had just finished a seriously delicious and reasonably sized Vietnamese take-out meal from Saigon Grill. I had stopped ordering from SG when a lawsuit was filed on behalf of its delivery people, alleging shockingly low pay and long hours forced on them by SG's owners. When a jury came back awarding the delivery staff $4.6 million dollars, I knew that I could once again order from Saigon Grill. The pork chops were great, the crystal shrimp dumplings even better, and even though the bo luc lac... More

Sweet Surprise: The Sugar In Iced Coffee From Starbucks

An iced coffee has precisely two ingredients: coffee, and ice. Right? Well, not at Starbucks. There, your tall iced coffee (unless ordered "unsweetened") contains a shot of simple syrup and around 90 calories. The website does note this, as Newsday reports; the iced coffee is described as a "Starbucks Terraza Blend, served chilled and slightly sweetened on ice." Still, since coffee in this country doesn't usually come pre-sugared, it's a little surprising.... More

Video: Michael Jackson Organizes a Food Fight After Filming 'Black or White'

We were sad to hear about the passing of Michael Jackson today. After learning about his cardiac arrest, only to find his death confirmed shortly thereafter, we listened to some of the pop king's hits and found this video of him organizing a food fight after filming Black or White, a short early 1990s film inspired by the hit single. Jackson wanted to pay the director John Landis some thanks for all his hard work throughout the taping, and clearly pie projectiles were the best way to do that. Jackson and a young Macaulay Culkin (also in Black or White) planted stink bombs in the pies, which were all lined up on a very long table, and had Super... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Ice, Sans Cream: Shaved ice shows up in LA. [LA Weekly] ’Sicle Sense: “Popcornsicles” at Taste Of Chicago. [Chicago Sun-Times] Revenge of Baldy: Top Chef 5's Stefan gets his own restaurant. [Eater LA] Naked Lunch: Playboy does a Top 10 Sandwich list. They cite Straight Wharf Fish Store, but miss the best sandwich there. [Playboy] Things You Don't Need: Cheez-It Flavored Lip Balm.[Eat Me Daily] Sweet Tweets: Beverly Hills scores a cupcake truck. [Seattle Times]... More

Come on in 'The Kitchn'

Each week we round up our favorite posts and recipes from our friends at The Kitchn. This week, the Kitchn explains the principles of cheese meltiness, noting that Parmesan and other hard, low-moisture cheeses are not the way to go. Also on the Kitchn, the afterlife of a Dutch Oven, how to grow your own alfalfa sprouts, poaching plums in a brown sugar syrup, and using cinnamon sticks as skewers on the grill.... More

Critic-Turned-Cook Tackles Sausage Making

Critic Turned Cook follows former Seattle Post-Intelligencer food critic Leslie Kelly on her journey away from the keyboard and into the kitchen. Take it away, Leslie! Leslie Kelly meets her sausage makerOh man, I love the sausage at Shultzy's, the popular pub near the University of Washington where I've been working. Especially the andouille, which is made with a super-secret recipe that owner Don Shultze got from a mysterious Cajun woman who walked through his door years ago and asked him to make her a batch. "She never came back, but I still use her recipe," he said. The sausage making process isn't so pretty though—the meat squeezed into casings that used to be known as intestines. Yeah. You've got... More

California Eatin': Dutch Crunch in the Bay Area

Growing up in the Bay Area, there was a single bread of choice for sandwiches. No, not San Francisco sourdough--lunches came on Dutch Crunch, a dense, doughy bread with a moist crumb. But what sets it apart from other breads? The crackly top, with crunchy little bits growing from the paler crust underneath. More

Video: How to Eat Watermelon at Business Lunches

When deal-making at very important business lunches, it's typically encouraged not to order watermelon. But, if you find yourself in this situation, fear not. All you will need is one cupped hand (a seed-spitting receptacle) to survive this problematic scenario. The video, after the jump.... More

‘Top Chef Masters,’ Ep. 3: Offal on the Street

Last week’s episode of Top Chef Masters showed that competition can be downright warm and fuzzy. While Graham and Wylie each vowed to undo the other, their tag-teaming antics showed it was all in good fun. And before the judging, all four chefs baked cookies together! So many hugs. So much teamwork. This week’s episode was a very different story. Contestants Rick Bayless Frontera Grill, Topolobampo Charity: Frontera Farmer Foundation Cindy Pawlcyn Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen, Go Fish, and Mustards Grill Charity: Community Health Clinic Ole Wilo Benet Pikayo, Payá, Varita, Puerto Rico Governor's Mansion Charity: San Jorge Children's Foundation Ludo Lefebvre L’Orangerie Charity: C.H.A.S.E. for Life Warning: Spoilers ahead. Their heated battle, after the jump.... More

Threadless T-Shirt Giveaway: A Piece of Cake

This week Serious Eats is giving away a different food-related Threadless t-shirt each weekday! For the chance to win today's shirt, A Piece of Cake, just tell us in the comments: What is your favorite kind of cake? One person will be chosen at random among the eligible comments below. Entry is only open to U.S. residents. Comments will close Friday, June 26, at noon ET. The standard Serious Eats contest rules apply.... More

Seriously Italian: Speck from Alto Adige

Editor's note: On Thursdays, Babbo pastry chef Gina DePalma checks in with Seriously Italian. After a stint in Rome, she's back in the States, channeling her inner Italian spirit via recipes and intel on delicious Italian eats. Take it away, Gina! Alto Adige is Italy’s northern-most province, anchored by the cosmopolitan city of Bolzano, sharing a long border and a powerful cultural connection with neighboring Austria. Also known as Südtirol, or South Tyrol, the land fluctuated between Austrian and Italian control at the turn of the last century, finally becoming part of Italy after World War I. Speck is the most treasured food product of the Südtirol, a distinctly flavored, smoked, cured ham that represents well the character of Alto... More

How to Politely Take Food Photos in Restaurants

Yup, that's me. Photograph from Sifu Renka on Flickr I'm one of those people who always whips out a camera when I eat out for possible blogging purposes (besides that I'll forget what I've done if I don't take photos—food-related or not). While my friends are pretty used to it—they sit back when the food arrives until they're sure I've taken all my shots—the other people in the restaurant probably aren't. One part of me thinks, "I hope I'm not annoying other people too much," while the other part thinks, "Oh god, I just need one good shot of this burger...no, that was bad, I need another [moves the burger]...and another [moves the burger]..." Helena Echlin of CHOW's column Table... More

Weekend Cook and Tell Round Up: Make a Meal for $10

Beautiful deviled eggs by Cassaendra. Welcome to the Weekend Cook and Tell Round Up. Last week's challenge to prepare a meal for four by spending only $10 was a difficult one. Although I have a very well-stocked pantry, I love to go grocery shopping, especially if there are people coming over. This week's topic was an exercise in frugality for me and I learned something very valuable from it: You don't always need to break out the foie gras; sometimes vegetables from the farmers' market and some pasta are just as decadent. Everyone who participated in this week's Weekend Cook and Tell came up with some really creative and inexpensive meal ideas. Take a look: Somehow Huneybumper made 100 tamales... More

Burrito Tape

Who likes a leaky burrito? No one. In his webcomic Wondermark, David Malki presents a solution to wounded burritos: burrito tape, "strips of tortilla coated with a light corn flour paste" conveniently packaged in a roll. Related 'Let It Burrito' How To Make Bulk Breakfast Burritos Best Burritos: What's your recipe? [SE Talk, 1/8/08]... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Cooking With Herbs: Lots of ideas on what to cook with herbs. [NPR] All About Lentils: If you're not a fan of nutrition-packed lentils, maybe these facts will change your mind. [Telegraph] How to Make Your Own Tofu: Just steam a mixture of soymilk and nigari—a seawater-derived coagulant—for homemade tofu. [LA Times] Agua Frescas Recipe: This "watermelon water" drink is perfect for summer. [Seattle Times] Hot Dogs Taste Test: Nathan's is number one in this taste test comparing 13 hot dogs available nationwide. [Epicurious] Pistachios are Hazardous Again: California Prime Produce and Orange County Orchards-brand pistachios have been recalled due to possible salmonella contamination. [UPI.com]... More

Zummo’s Café in Scranton, Pennsylvania

"This is Zummo's Café—Pennsylvania's, and perhaps America's, best coffee shop." If you're the sort of person that doesn’t know why they should visit Scranton, Pennsylvania—except to see if the Dunder Mifflin office really exists—I'm here to help. Imagine you're lost in a sort of run down neighborhood. You spot a café, and pull over. It’s across the street from a church, down the street from a storefront courtroom, Catholic school, and rectory and in an old wood-frame house. A police car is parked outside and construction workers are having a smoke out front. What do you expect? Plastic-wrapped danishes? Week-old doughnuts? At least you'll get directions. When you walk in though, you notice the Clover machine. Yeah, they make coffee... More

Meet & Eat: Grace Kang, Serious Eats Intern

Note: Grace interned with us earlier this year but now that school's out of session, she's back for more! She'll be here over the summer to help us blog, eat, and reclaim her title as Ed's diet buddy. Her first contribution to Serious Eats this summer? Sharing rainbow cookies from a bakery near her home in Long Island! Ah yes, we do love Grace. Please give her a warm welcome! Yes, that's a crown of peeps. Name: Grace Kang Location: New York Occupation: Student Guilty pleasures? Lemon curd straight out of the fridge, cold pancakes, champers. When I was younger I loved microwaved ham and Swiss cheese rollups; kind of gross, but amazing at the time. Describe your perfect meal.... More

Video: The Butterfield Diet Plan on 'The Peter Serafinowicz Show'

Brian Butterfield has a diet for you: The Butterfield Diet! You may be starving yourself during the week, but on Saturday, or "Treat Day," you get 24 hours to eat whatever you want. Whatever. You. Want. Pints o' cream, sandwich casserole, chocolate quail's eggs, discount foie gas, egg 'n' ham slabs—you name it! You just have to eat it all within 24 hours, which technically means you could eat for 24 hours straight. Hell, why not—you deserve it.... More

Condiment Gun

Ladies and gentlemen, the future is now. We teased you with the spice gun back in 2008 and a year later we have the Condiment Gun! It's actually been around for a while, but I'm sad to say this is the first I've heard of it. Methinks I have a lot of ketchup shooting to catch up on. Some words of warning: Apparently this is not designed to fire chunky sauces and is not a toy. There's also no safety so don't go stumbling around with this at your next dinner party. $24.98, from Things You Never Knew Existed; £14.95, from Firebox.com... More

Threadless T-Shirt Giveaway: Lemon Aid

This week Serious Eats is giving away a different food-related Threadless t-shirt each weekday! For the chance to win today's shirt, Lemon Aid, just tell us in the comments: How do you like to make lemonade? One person will be chosen at random among the eligible comments below. Entry is only open to U.S. residents. Comments will close Thursday, June 25, at noon ET. The standard Serious Eats contest rules apply.... More

Snapshots from the South of France: Rustic Macarons

"Between the two cookie halves was no cream, no chocolate, no jam. It just was what it was. And it was perfect." I never knew it before, but the macaron is a lot like Eliza Doolittle. Imagine you met Miss Doolittle at the end of My Fair Lady, when she can talk, dress, and dance like all of the other society girls. It is in this altered, Pygmalion state that I first encountered the macaron, a two-bite cookie gem, in Paris. All you see is the polish. You have no idea that this girl, or this cookie, has an underside anything other than pure luxury, hauteur, entitlement. But indeed, you are mistaken. There is much that you do not know.... More

How to Freeze Bacon

If you've ever wondered how to freeze bacon you've probably googled it by now, but if not, Megan Reardon of Not Martha shares her bacon freezing advice—she rolls it in parchment paper—along with a few pretty photos. About.com says you can keep bacon in the freezer for a month before the fat goes rancid. Related Quick Tip: How to Substitute Bacon for Pancetta The Baconcyclopedia, Everything You Want to Know About Bacon on One Really Long Page In Videos: Squeez Bacon from ThinkGeek... More

Serious Green: Plastic-Less Ways to Transport Your Lunch

Let's be serious. This economic climate means this is not the time, nor the place to be going out to lunch everyday. Those $8 burritos, $6 burgers, and $9 salads will start to add up to some serious money in no time. Besides the slow and steady hit your wallet is taking from your daily lunch habit, think of all the styrofoam containers and plastic forks that are piling up out there. And with all of us on this planet it's adding up way too quickly. So what's the best way to save a buck and do your part at stopping the rising tide of plastics at the same time? Go old-school and brown bag it. If you do... More

How to Make a 3-D Paper Taco Truck

Remember those paper dolls that you could cut out and play with? Yeah, they were a total letdown. Why would I play in 2-D when 3-D dolls existed? Well, here they are in paper taco truck form from Goopymart! There are seven different models to choose from including Senor Macho Taco (for the macho men), Yum Taco (what else do you need in a name?), and Pirate (because pirates love tacos too). I printed out and made the Kawaii model, mainly because there's a blob saying "FOOD" and "LOVE" on the side. I mean if I had my own truck, this is basically what it would look like, give or take a few unicorns and sparkles. Related Video: Los... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Not Enough Hangovers: The Australian wine industry is in crisis mode. [NYT] From Bean to Bar: One cacao sourcer for Taza Chocolate explains the journey. [AFC] Japamericanese Food: Why American food is so hot in Japan. [Slate] Healthy Food Hurdles: Consumers say they want low-cal options, but are actually picking the fatty foods. [AdAge] OMG, More Hot Dogs: Around the world in 80 dogs, from Tijuana to Egypt. [Bon Appetit] Courtside Chipotle: Chipotle's first food court branch will open in a Maryland mall. [Baltimore Sun] Man vs. Cookie: The neurological challenges of turning down food. [NYT]... More

How Olives Get Into Olive Loaf, and Other Food Mysteries Solved

Photograph from isfullofcrap on Flickr OK, so you might already know why popcorn pops or why Jell-O gels, but this Chicago Tribune piece also covers some mysteries I didn't know or didn't even think about. It turns out Slim Jims actually do have a shelf life (a comforting thought), but as for how the olives get into olive loaf? First of all, I've only seen olive loaf on TV so I can't vouch for its taste, but even if you do love it, would you really want to know how it's made? Blargh.... More

Hot Dog Of The Week: Philly Combo

Note: Please welcome Hawk Krall, a Philly-based illustrator who will be chiming in with his hot dog wisdom and original artwork on a regular basis. Take it away, Hawk! The Philly Combo is a hot dog variation unique to the Philadelphia area. Believed to have originated at Levis Hot Dogs, which was open between 1895 and 1992 on 6th and South Streets, this kosher-inspired concoction consists of an all-beef hot dog and a potato fish cake topped with mustard and onions. Moe's Hot Dogs here in Philly still serves up this classic, and even has Levis Champ Cherry soda to wash it down. Over the years, variations have evolved including the addition of pepper hash or pepper cabbage, a Pennsylvania... More

Serious Cheese: Part Two in the Adventures of Lactose Intolerance

"On a couple of occasions I've been bold enough to try a bowl of cereal with one-percent milk." I have been humbled, surprised, and, frankly, a bit overwhelmed by the outpouring of support and advice in response to my post last week about my lactose intolerance discovery. You have shared many ideas, from the practical to the fanciful. Probably the best advice I received was to make an appointment with my doctor to get tested. Lots of folks said that gallbladder problems, dairy allergies, and celiac disease can all produce symptoms similar to lactose intolerance. I have heeded this advice and will be seeing my doctor soon. I have a feeling he'll send me straight to a gastroenterologist, so I... More

Video: Food Bloggers Share Chicken Recipes on Good Bite

Good Bite is a new website that brings together recipes, cooking advice, and tutorial videos from some of the web's most popular (and Serious Eats' favorite) cooking-focused food bloggers. The first roundtable video features chicken recipe ideas from Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen, Elise Bauer of Simply Recipes, and Jaden Hair of Steamy Kitchen. The general consensus: white mean is bland. But that doesn't mean they don't like chicken at all; Deb likes to brine her cutlets, Elise focuses on thighs, and Jaden recommends cooking chicken wings with hoisin sauce. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Threadless T-Shirt Giveaway: Baron VonFunburger's Haunted Castle Cavalcade

This week Serious Eats is giving away a different food-related Threadless t-shirt each weekday! For the chance to win today's shirt, Baron VonFunburger's Haunted Castle Cavalcade, just tell us in the comments: What is your favorite fast food item? (The assumption is that if you don't have a favorite, you probably wouldn't want this shirt.) One person will be chosen at random among the eligible comments below. Entry is only open to U.S. residents. Comments will close Wednesday, June 24, at noon ET. The standard Serious Eats contest rules apply.... More

Served: Street Food, Chocolate Cake, and Home

I blog by day and wait tables in a New York City restaurant by night. I'm excited to bring you Served, dispatches from the front of the house. Enjoy! My friend U. and I were drinking sangria on a midtown rooftop, standing under an umbrella too small to shield the two of us from the rain. Dinner had been midnight street cart fare: 53rd Street and 6th Avenue, Halal Chicken and Rice. Or at least, that’s what we had intended. Halfway through our chicken and lamb with white sauce, we got nervous. “This isn’t like last time,” U. said, “It’s not as spicy and the meat is in such huge chunks. And where’s the line?” “Wait,” I craned my neck... More

Pancake Font

What will you do today? Will it be as awesome as making your very own pancake font? What I want to know is who was lucky enough to eat the typographic samples after the photo shoot? If anyone wants to create a cupcake font, I'm available for cleanup duty. [via deleteyourself.] Related In Videos: Creating a 'Font' From Food Buttermilk in pancakes? [Talk] Pancakes Mountain T-Shirt, Plus Other Pancake Outerwear... More

Should Fast Food Chains Give Kids Toys?

Photo from GadgetDude on FlickrNot because they're choking hazards, and not because they're a commercial gimmick—one official wants to stop fast-food toys because they're making kids fat. Concerned about rising rates of childhood obesity in his country, Brazilian federal prosecutor Marcio Schusterschitz petitioned a judge to ban fast-food outlets from giving away toys with kids' meals. As Reuters reports, he contends that including these toys gives kids extra incentive to eat unhealthy food: "It is necessary to remove toys that are used to leverage the sale of food that has little nutritional value," his official statement reads. What do you think? Do kids' meal toys train children to prefer junk food? Or are they just a harmless bit of extra... More

Photo of the Day: Summer Tomatoes Are Here

Photograph from That Blonde Girl in the Serious Eats Flickr Pool It may not feel like it in many parts of the country, but summer has officially arrived. And in New Jersey, that means tomatoes—like these guys, at the Sorbello Girls Farm Market in Elks Township. Let the eating begin.... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Fry It Up: There’s nothing like Navajo fry bread. [Bay Area Bites] KosherMallow: In a marshmallow taste test, the kosher brand Elyon won out, with a “great flavor and firmer texture.” [SF Chronicle] Green Philly: More and more Philadelphia restaurants have gardens on-site. [The Illadelph] Rock and a Hard Place: Iron City beer, favorite brew of the Steeler Nation, is moving from Pittsburgh to Latrobe, PA—birthplace of Rolling Rock. [WSJ] K-F-Sued: Kentucky Fried Chicken's failed giveaway has now sparked a lawsuit. [NRN] Taco Tweets: A twittering Taco Bell truck will travel across the country, handing out free tacos all summer. Follow @TacoBellTruck for updates. Rebranding: Pizza Hut transitioning to "The Hut" [Slice]... More

Fresh Food on TV: Weekday Edition

With all the channels on broadcast TV and cable—and the inevitable episode repeats—it's hard to sort out what's new or worthwhile. Let us sort it out for you so you don't miss anything worth watching. Times may vary with region; check your local listings for exact hour and channels. Monday (June 22) Good Eats (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "Feeling Punchy." Alton explores the history of punch. 8 p.m. ET, Food Network Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "Old Time Favorites." Guy checks out places that keep the past alive in Idaho, Portland, and Miami. 10 p.m. ET, Food Network Late Show with David Letterman: Chef Emeril Lagasse is a guest. 11:30 p.m.... More

Tayberries Are Now In Season

Photo from Eric Luse at the Chronicle I'd never seen a tayberry before today, but I've never met a berry I didn't like. The San Francisco Chronicle has a short piece on the recently bred Scottish fruit. It's the product of a cross between a European raspberry and an Aurora blackberry, and it resembles an unripe version of the latter. In season only until mid-August, they're now popping up on menus around the San Francisco Bay.... More

'The Next Food Network Star' Week 3

In this week's episode of The Next Food Network Star, the remaining contestants faced two dinner party challenges. The first was to shop for a party of twelve on a $60 budget. The second was to get into groups of two and serve Ina Garten and eleven others dinner made with those ingredients. In true reality show fashion, there were more than a few meltdowns. [Warning, spoilers ahead]... More

Market Scene: Summer Bounty in Logan Square Market, Chicago

I was honestly a tad underwhelmed with the Logan Square Farmers' Market last year. There were too many pre-made food vendors, and not enough whole vegetables for me to buy and take home. I went back this weekend to see if I had caught the market too late in the season last year, or just on an off week. And luckily, I had. The Logan Square market was bursting from its seams with fresh vegetables, mounds of lettuce, and interesting stalls. It was a glorious Sunday.... More

Cook the Book: 'L.A.'s Original Farmers Market Cookbook'

If you've ever been to L.A. chances are that you've been to Farmers Market. Located at Third and Fairfax, right next door to CBS's Television City, Farmers Market is an L.A. institution celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. The market was started back in 1934 by oil baron E.B. Gilmore. Back then most of the land in southern California was used for agricultural purposes and the idea was to create a place where farmers and artisans could come together and sell their wares. The market was an immediate success and rapidly expanded to include not only local produce, but exotic food items from around the world. In 1941, the market was revamped, and it went from a series of outdoor... More

Video: 'Le Café,' a French Animation About Coffee Addiction

Le Café by French band Odelaf & Monsieur D. tells the tale of a man who starts his day off with a nice cup of coffee. Then adds another cup. And another. And...another. And with each new cup of coffee he drinks, a little bit of his brain is destroyed until he dissolves into a complete lunatic. If you can relate to this story, you might need to cut down on your coffee consumption. Watch the madness unfold in this animated video directed by Stephanie Marguerite and Emilie Tarascou of the Art School of Angouleme (EMCA), after the jump.... More

Cute Paintings of Animals Eating Food

It's time you decorate your home with more paintings of cute animals eating food in ways you wouldn't find in nature. I don't mind pretending that a walrus's tusks are indeed meant to hold bagels or that whales wear bowties while eating muffins. Paintings for $25-$30, from VerySmallAnna on Etsy... More

Threadless T-Shirt Giveaway: Pancake Mountain

Words by Robyn Lee | My wardrobe is about 50 percent t-shirts, and out of that 50 percent, 90 percent from Threadless. I've been buying t-shirts from them for over seven years and would safely say that there's no other online apparel store with as good designs available at as reasonable prices. Assuming you like t-shirts that aren't blank, you should be able to find something there that you like. To spread the Threadless love around, this week Serious Eats is giving away a different food-related Threadless t-shirt each weekday! For the chance to win today's shirt, Pancake Mountain, just tell us in the comments: What is your favorite pancake dish? One person will be chosen at random among... More

In Genius Snack Ideas: Frosting On Saltines

Photo from Boots In The OvenAnother triumph for the happy union of sweet and salty. Logan at Boots In The Oven recalls a favorite snack from childhood that he's never given up: canned frosting on crackers. "Yup, my favorite is cream cheese frosting with Premium brand saltines," he says. "Original flavor." Sweet and gooey on salty and crunchy... almost like Nutella on tortilla chips.... More

Snapshots from the South of France: Bouillabaisse and Rouille

I wrote a few weeks ago in my French in a Flash column that two great ladies came out of Marseille: my mother, and Bouillabaisse. We had been in the South for two weeks, and I had had plenty of time with the former. We took boat tours through the Calanques together, climbed the steep stone steps to Les Baux, and negotiated the pebbly shores of Cassis. I can never quite have my fill of maman, but I had not even so much as had a taste of bouillabaisse. I had been saving the (second to) best for last, and I had made a reservation for our last night. The locals in Cassis, a short half-hour journey in a... More

This Week in Eating Out

Korean School Eats: Robyn Lee tries a restaurant in Seoul that serves Korean cafeteria fare, with an upscale twist. Navettes: Kerry Saretsky introduces Navettes, French cookies with a storied past and buttery crumb perfect for teatime. Neapolitan Pizza: The LA Pizza Maven discovers an establishment serving pies with a charred, thin, and smoky crust, easily bendable with a satisfying chew. The Right Apple: Michael Nagrant learns about the seasonal changes in hard apple cider made by Seedling Orchard, where distinctive varietals form just the right mix.... More

This Week in Recipes

Cook the Book: Caroline Russock writes of that peerless combination of dough and filling, as it applies to Francis Mallmann's Empanadas Mendocinas, the classic Argentinian pastry of chopped beef, hard-boiled eggs, and green olives. No More Bagged Baby Spinach: Gina di Palma professes her love of verdant, mature spinach and shares her recipe for Frittelle di Spinaci. Soup Tonight: Blake Royer shares some tips for making a simple, well-executed Genovese Minestrone, a soup that eats like a meal and is infinitely adaptable. A Fresh Approach: Kerry Saretsky discusses the versatility of crème fraîche, a user-friendly ingredient that adds a bit of tang and cream to any dish. From Head to Tail: Nick Kindelsperger tackles a fish dish head-on (literally),... More

This Week's Tasty 10

According to our handy site-metering utility, the top 10 most delicious items across the Serious Eats family of sites this week were ... 1. Taco Bell's Volcano Taco with Lava Sauce Returns to Menus Nationwide First introduced last September, the Volcano Taco appeared on Taco Bell's menu for only three months. Whether it was the red crunchy taco shell or the spicy orange goop (which goes by "Lava Sauce") or the limited-time-only appeal, people were into it. Really into it. When it disappeared from menus, people freaked out, but thank heavens, it's back. 2. Photo of the Day: 'Back to the Future' Wedding Cake If you love red velvet cake and Back to the Future, and happen to be getting... More

Photo of the Day: Meringuesm

Photograph from cooklocal on Flickr Meringuesm may not be a word, technically, but it really should be. How else would you define the wispy peaks and valleys made of whipped egg whites and powdered sugar? Don't you just want to poke it? Related Success with Meringue! [Talk] Dorie Greenspan's Creamiest Lime Cream Meringue Pie Sherry Yard's Flourless Chocolate Cake with Meringue Topping... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Cinnamon Toast: The best cinnamon breads in West Coast grocery stores. [SF Chronicle] Ice Cream Time: The history of ice cream, getting us ready for National Ice Cream Month in July. [Chicago Sun-Times] Brewmasters: An interview with the brothers behind Beer Advocate. [Boston Globe] Drive-Thru: Women who leave without paying their IHOP bill end up crashing right into the restaurant. [AP] Big Cuts:How to roast pork on the grill. [WaPo] Nestle Recalls Raw Cookie Dough: Nestle voluntarily recalls its refrigerated Toll House cookie dough products and warnes consumers not to eat raw Toll House cookie dough due to possible E. coli contamination. [FDA]... More

Fresh Food on TV: Weekend Edition

With all the channels on broadcast TV and cable—and the inevitable episode repeats—it's hard to sort out what's new or worthwhile. Let us sort it out for you so you don't miss anything worth watching. Times may vary with region; check your local listings for exact hour and channels. Saturday (June 20) 5 Ingredient Fix (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "French Bistro at Home." A French inspired meal of duck breasts in citrus port cherry sauce, golden potato and cauliflower gratin, Earl Grey tea cookies, and royal fizz. (repeat) 8 a.m. ET, Food Network Secrets of a Restaurant Chef (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "The Secret to Duck Confit." Tips and tricks for making duck confit,... More

Blogwatch: Zabaglione Ice Cream

Keiko Oikawa of Nordljus is churning up zabaglione ice cream with a fresh berry swirl. With inspiration from David Lebovitz and Tessa Kiros, Keiko turns this classic Italian dessert into something cool, creamy, simple, and just a tad boozy. Zabaglione ice cream sounds like a perfect way to welcome the true start of summer.... More

What Is Superman Ice Cream?

Photograph from jamelah on Flickr Superman ice cream is a Michigan thing involving three flavors (in shades of blue, red, and yellow—your standard Superman colors) working together, sort of like Neapolitan. So is it just vanilla ice cream with buckets of food coloring? Apparently no, at least not in the case of the blue flavor. Blue Moon, another Michigan (or maybe more Midwestern in general) thing—and not beer in this context— is a super sweet Smurf-colored flavor that apparently "just tastes like blue." Some guesstimate that the yellow is vanilla (others have said banana, but they have little support) and that red is cherry, raspberry, strawberry, or another generic sweet-ish red fruit. It sounds like a bubble gum ice... More

Look Who's Talkin': Comments, Quips, and Tips We Have Known and Loved

There's so much to keep up with in Talk that we almost can't keep up. If you're in the same boat, here's a small selection of topics and responses that have piqued our interest this week. Father's Day BBQ: BYO Steak Bar "A good steak cooked right needs no accompaniments. That said, buy some A1 just in case someone brings a lousy cut and/or someone's steak gets overcooked. Lump crab meat seems to go well over steak too. Especially when they're both covered in a mushroom sauce." —cycorider A Product That Made Me Scratch My Head "Many things, including individually wrapped 'ready to microwave' potatoes. I mean, really?" —hmw0029 Vegan-Friendly BBQ "Grill polenta slices brushed with olive oil. Serve with... More

Snapshots from the South of France: Navettes

It’s easy to forget in our modern, secular world, but France is a Catholic country. Even its food contains a drop of Holy Water. In the South of France, there docks a very widespread yet singular cookie in the shape of a boat. It is called a Navette, which takes its name from a word that originally meant "boat," but now means something closer to "shuttle." The story goes that at one point, Mary Magdalene sailed to Marseilles, and these little cookies have been made ever since to commemorate her voyage.... More

Video: Japanese Animated Suntory Beer Commercials Featuring Penguins (1980s)

Mike is a penguin. A mostly sad penguin. He spends his days getting beat up in boxing matches, crying over his lost love, and staring out the window as dead leaves fall to the ground. And you know what they say: When you're a penguin suffering from a bout of depression, just kick back with a frosty can of Suntory Beer! I can't watch these commercials without laughing, even though it seems wrong to laugh at the increasingly doomful plight of a cute, animated penguin. These commercials featuring Suntory's rotund mascot were so popular that they led to a full-length movie called Penguin Memories. What memories, you ask? Oh... the ones about the Vietnam War. Yes, it's a war... More

From a Fascinating Listicle on Beavers

"The Catholic Church actually declared beavers to be a fish, according to dietary restrictions, meaning they are OK to eat on both Fridays and throughout Lent. [The Church's] decisions are based more on an animal’s environment than their physical characteristics." [Neatorama]... More

It's a Little Quiet in This Corner

Aww. These Talk threads have few or zero replies as of today. Anyone have anything to say? Cooking with Amaranth "I have a package of Arrowhead Mills whole grain Amaranth and am looking for recipes to make salads or main dishes. And suggestions? Any advice from those who have used amaranth in salads?" Argentine cooking / recipes from Argentina "Hey, I'm having a traditional Argentine Asado in a couple weeks and have found some authentic recipes/foods but would like more!! I need: vegetable dishes, a general flavor profile of spices and herbs would be REALLY helpful! Any other tips would be great! thanks!" Iranian Recipes "My boyfriend's family immigrated from Iran 25 years ago and I now have acquired many... More

The Coffee Wars Continue

If you haven’t seen a McCafé commercial in the last few weeks, you haven’t turned on your television. McDonald’s $100 million marketing blitz was their biggest since the launch of the Egg McMuffin, back in the 1970s. And it seems to be paying off. According to the Boston Globe, McDonald’s is now the second-most preferred coffee brand in America—unseating Dunkin’ Donuts, and coming up behind Starbucks. But both Starbucks and Dunkin’ have cut prices and launched specials in response. What do you think? Have recent ads, product launches, and price cuts changed your morning coffee routine? Or are you set in your caffeinated ways?... More

Ed Levine's Serious Diet, Week 72: I Couldn't Finish 2 Hot Dogs; Does That Make Me a Wuss?

I've been doing some serious hot dog eating for an upcoming post, and today at lunchtime I headed to our local Papaya King for some purely academic, tube steak-eating research. I ordered one with mustard and sauerkraut, and one slaw dog with pickles. Eating kosher-style hot dogs with mustard and sauerkraut always sends me hurtling back in time to my childhood, when I would effortlessly polish off a pastrami sandwich and two hot dogs at a single lunch at our local deli, Wilshire's. Talk about establishing damaging, self-destructive eating habits early. I first ate half of the hot dog with mustard and sauerkraut and then moved on to the slaw dog. I was enjoying both immensely when my brain sent... More

Weird Food-Related Collections

This is my collection of international Coke cans. (What, is that weird?) It's the kind of relic from my childhood that I forget about, now living three thousand miles from the house I grew up in, until I walk into my bedroom and realize—oh, right—one entire wall is lined with cans of Coke. The collection started when I was about nine years old. My family was flying back from the East Coast, and my older brother realized that the soda a flight attendant had brought him had a German label. That familiar Coca-Cola can—but in a different language! Awesome, I said to myself. I bought that can off him for a dollar. (My ever-entrepreneurial brother let me have nothing... More

'Let It Burrito'

If you like burritos and things that don't make much sense, you'll love this comic by Buttersafe. (The ending is great. You'll see.) Related A Comic About a World of Peanut Butter and Chocolate 'Alien' with Apples... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Monkey Business: A new documentary, Bananas!, details the dangers of pesticides in Nicaraguan banana farms, and Dole Food isn’t pleased. [Epi-Log] Season of Saison: Gourmet suggests eight Saison beers for warm summer days. [Gourmet] Goat: Long popular in South America, Africa, and the Mediterranean, goat meat is just now gaining ground in the US. [The Atlantic] Sweet Smell of Summer: The Morning Edition asks D.C. market-goers about zucchini blossoms, which “taste like squash perfume.” [NPR] Sweet Treat: ‘Tis the season for water ices in Philly, and Gourmet suggests eight places to get ‘em. [Gourmet] Green Beans? Which leaves a lighter carbon footprint, dried or canned beans? [WaPo]... More

Dinner Tonight: Pork Schnitzel

I always assumed Wiener Schnitzel was from Germany, but the claim goes that it's really Austrian in origin—and that it's not served with a sauce at all, but simply with a wedge of lemon. It's also traditionally made with veal, and in fact must be made from veal if it's to be called Wiener Schnitzel in an Austrian restaurant. Then again, Wikipedia also tells a story of possible schnitzel roots in northern Italy, so who really knows? Whatever the authenticity-mongers say, this recipe made from pork with a sour cream sauce is delicious, adapted from Elise Bauer's wonderful blog Simply Recipes. It also eschews the deep-fry method often used for a pan-frying, though plenty of oil is still necessary... More

Homemade Wisconsin-Style Bratwurst

Over at The Paupered Chef, Dinner Tonight contributor Nick Kindelspeger tries his hand at making his own Wisconsin-style bratwurst. Sorting through more than 40 recommended ingredients and ultimately converting a hundred-pound recipe into a five-pound one, he ends up with the bratwurst “of his dreams”—“perfectly plump, gushing with juice, and haunted by charcoal smoke.” See the recipe, and his step-by-step photo tutorial, here.... More

Drop in Wind Speed in U.S. May Affect Crops

"If you're reducing the wind speed, then you're reducing the ventilation of the crop. Corn is like people—it likes the same temperature range. When it gets above 90 degrees, it really would like to have some ventilation." —Eugene Takle, Iowa State University professor of atmospheric science... More

Come on in 'The Kitchn'

Each week we round up our favorite posts and recipes from our friends at The Kitchn. This week, the Kitchn justifies paying $7.50 for a dozen gorgeous, pasture-raised eggs over the generic grocery store alternative for half the price. Also on the Kitchn, salvaging butter wrappers, the curious existence of yellow baby carrots, DIY curry ketchup, and dressing up s'mores.... More

Critic-Turned-Cook Loves The Sounds Of The Kitchen

Critic Turned Cook follows former Seattle Post-Intelligencer food critic Leslie Kelly on her journey away from the keyboard and into the kitchen. Take it away, Leslie! Photograph from Yelp.com One of the things I love best about being in restaurant kitchens is the music that gets cranked in the back, the beat that motivatives like a double espresso. It's easy to go faster when you're chopping in time. Each of the kitchens in which I've worked has its own soundtrack. At Lola, it was hardcore. In the Tom Douglas pastry kitchen, it was a wild iPod shuffle mix worthy of inspiring dance moves. It cracked me up when "Beat It" came on as I was standing over a giant Hobart... More

Should Recipes Shrink to 140 Characters on Twitter?

"What about your bubbe's borscht recipe? Didn't she probably squeeze it onto an index card in roughly 140 characters?" Twitter user @cookbook condenses recipes to 140 characters or fewer. Recipe from a 1950s Gourmet cookbook, for sale on etsy.com, is definitely more than 140 characters. Can a recipe be only 140 characters long? Sure, you could cram in short-hand terms for liter (l) and olive oil (olvoil), but is it truly a recipe? Many people, including the entire cookbook industry, would argue no. Using Twitter as a platform to share shrunken recipes—which @cookbook has proven can attract over 15,000 followers—strips the recipe of its headnote, its hand-holding instructions, and its soul, some would argue. It's like showing the credits to... More

Video: Bento Box for the Google Chrome Icon Project

The Google Chrome Icon Project, promoting Google’s new-ish web browser, invites users to submit YouTube videos of themselves creating their own versions of the browser’s four-color icon. Unsurprisingly, a lot revolve around food—like this bento box, sculpted from bell pepper, broccoli, scrambled egg, and a few surprises. The video of its creation, in super-fast motion, after the jump.... More

Serious Heat: What the Heck Is in Ras el Hanout?

"Ask as politely as you want, but Morocco's famous hospitality does not extend to revealing the spices or proportions contained in this legendary spice blend." Note: On Thursdays, Andrea Lynn, associate editor of Chile Pepper magazine, drops by with some Serious Heat. This week, she joined forces with travel writer Kate Mulcrone to discover the mystery of a Moroccan spice blend. Sifting through unground ras el hanout. Forget the baffling, labyrinthine streets of the medinas in Marrakech and Fes—the true mystery of Morocco is found in the pantry. Right next to jars of cinnamon, cumin, and dried ginger you might find ras el hanout, a blend of anywhere from ten to 100 spices that is the carefully guarded secret behind... More

Seriously Italian: Frittelle di Spinaci

Editor's note: On Thursdays, Babbo pastry chef Gina DePalma checks in with Seriously Italian. After a stint in Rome, she's back in the States, channeling her inner Italian spirit via recipes and intel on delicious Italian eats. Take it away, Gina! Any serious student of Italian cuisine understands the relationship that Italians have with leafy greens. I can’t remember an evening meal, with my family or when I lived in Italy, without a pile of garlicky greens on the side; it could be dandelion, swiss chard, escarole, chicory, or my very favorite, spinach. Spinach in Italy is beautiful: deep green, with an almost velvety appearance, and a distinctive, mineral-rich flavor. It only needs a minimalist approach to make it completely... More

'Top Chef Masters,' Episode 2: The 'Lost' Dinner

Did you watch this week's episode? Find out what each of the four contestants made using crap from vending machines during the Quickfire, and Darma Initiative–approved canned and preserved foods for Lost writers and producers during an island-themed elimination round. More

Doughnut Glaze Truck Tips Over Near Seattle

Gallons and gallons of white, sticky glaze spilled out on the side of Highway 99 in Des Moines, Washington, about 20 miles south of Seattle. The driver was only slightly hurt, while thousands of doughnuts somewhere went naked the next morning. [via Katie]... More

Weekend Cook and Tell Round Up: Sandwiches

Cajun Chicken Sandwich by Cassaendra Welcome back to the Weekend Cook and Tell Round UP. I had a feeling that last week's topic was going to be a popular one—who doesn't like sandwiches, right? This week we've gotten some really fantastic responses. Here are some of our favorites: Rdkturner went all out with this sandwich made of homemade rabbit terrine, homemade mayo, shallot mustard, grilled zucchini, and hard goat cheese. Homemade rabbit terrine? Rdkturner, you are my hero—no pun intended! MadelynRodriguez is a pro Cooker and Teller. Take a look at her Provençal Sandwich over at Karma-Free Cooking. Orchidgirl shares not one, but four sandwich ideas. Check them out at her blog: Lamb Sausage, Fresh Mozzarella & Arugula, Brie, Roasted... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Edible Garden at Buckingham Palace: Queen Elizabeth II has planted a vegetable garden on the royal grounds in London. First one there since the Victory Garden of WWII. [Obama Foodorama] Boil Carrots Whole: Study says slicing carrots after cooking may help them better fight cancer—and make them tastier. [Independent] Buggin' Out: New label laws will require notification if food gets its color from bodies of dead insects. [Seattle Times] What to Do With Slugs: Yes, slugs. Brit chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall urges you to eat the garden pests. [Telegraph] Starbucks: The coffee chain is now grinding beans fresh throughout the day instead of just in the morning. [WSJ] Survey Says: Living near fast food restaurants may not be the obesity trigger... More

Snapshots from South Korea: Soondubu and More from Ddukbaegi Jip

Last month I visited Seoul, South Korea, Here's a look at something I ate from my trip. For more, check out the rest of my Snapshots from South Korea. "This is it," Rob said while pointing to a window full of bubbling mini-cauldrons of stew on top of a gas range. My eyes grew wide. Some girls are enticed by windows full of jewelry or shoes; I'm all about the seething pots of stew. Or rather, I'm all about the single-dish restaurants. Ddukbaegi Jip, or Hot Pot/Stew House, is the haven of stew that stood before us. This small, homey restaurant only serves four items: boiled snails with doenjang (fermented soybean paste), doenjang jjigae (fermented soybean soup), soondubu (soft tofu... More

Paula Deen's Husband Will Write 'My Delicious Life with Paula Deen'

Photograph by Rachel Been Michael Groover can probably be summed up in three important facts: he's a tugboat pilot in Savannah, he looks like Santa, and he's married to Paula Deen. The last one means he, naturally, has a lot to say about waking up to the smell of ham hocks in the deep fryer with his spouse joyfully cackling in the background. Seriously, it must be a trip being married to Paula Deen. In this long interview with the couple on AOL Food, we find out that while Paula is busy launching a line of nuts and seafood, her husband is authoring a book called, My Delicious Life with Paula Deen. Sadly there's no cover image on Amazon... More

Chocolate-Scented Stamps Released in France

Last month France's postal service La Poste released limited edition chocolate-themed stamps to celebrate the 400th anniversary of chocolate's arrival in France in 1609. Each stamp in the ten-stamp set illustrates a different point in chocolate history. Even better, they smell like chocolate! If you're in France, buy them at the post office or online. [via girlhacker] (Chocolate-scented stamps have made a previous appearance in Switzerland in May 2001.) Related Mexico's Exporta Series Stamps, 1975 to 1993 Tropical Fruit Stamps... More

Mad Manatee Beer from Bold City Brewery

I don't like beer, but I'd want a bottle of Mad Manatee beer from the Jacksonville, Florida-based Bold City Brewery just for the awesome label. Visit Lovely Package to see other great designs made for Bold City Brewery by The Robin Shepherd Group. I can already tell you though that none of them top an angry manatee wielding a propeller, boat collision scars, and an anchor tattoo. (In case you don't know, boats and manatees do not mix. Visit savethemanatee.org for more information.) Related FIT Grads Design Funky Food Labels Beautiful Mustard Jars with Die-Cut Labels Beatle Juice: Playful Package-Design Project... More

Global Street Food Exhibit at Vitra Design Museum; Weil am Rhein, Germany

Global Street Food, an exhibition curated by Mike Meiré, features the accoutrements of various "improvised kitchens" from around the world, like this coffee cart from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Set up as works of art in a gallery, they're almost indistinguishable from sculptures like Marcel Duchamp's readymades—especially "Grill," from Kampala, Uganda (third photo). The exhibit is on display until July 12 at the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein, Germany. [via Kottke]... More

Market Scene: Copley Square Market in Boston

Note: This week we add Boston to our mix of Market Scene reports. Penny Cherubino, of BostonZest, reports. Photographs by Penny Cherubino There's been a farmers' market in Copley Square for decades. Long before the local food movement took hold, residents and workers in the historic heart of Boston have been buying fresh, local products from Massachusetts farms at this location. In the past five years, this market has doubled in size. On Tuesdays and Fridays the park is turned into a festival of fresh produce, eggs, meat, smoked fish, cheese, specialty food products, baked goods, plants, cut flowers, crafts, and prepared foods. This week I saw greens everywhere—lettuce, Swiss chard, Asian varieties, collards, mustard, spinach, and bok choy. And,... More

Video: Wilkins Coffee Commercials Featuring Muppets (1950s)

"You know, people who don't drink Wilkins Coffee just blow up sometimes!" How do you grab people's attention with only ten seconds to advertise your product? Puppets and violence! Muppet Wiki has the story behind these commercials made by Jim Henson from 1957 to 1961 featuring two puppets named Wilkins and Wontkins. Wilkins (who kind of resembles a proto-version of Kermit the Frog) pushes the importance of drinking Wilkins Coffee by inflicting various kinds of physical pain— shooting, clubbing, near-beheading, etc.—on the anti-Wilkins Coffee Wontkins. Considering how quickly these commercials fly by, they're strangely dark and funny at the same time. Hopefully they wont result in nightmares of being attacked by Muppets. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Threadless + Baking = Threadcakes Baking Contest

Last year's Threadcakes winner by Vapidintuition, based on "Insomnia" From now until August 3, people who love wearing Threadless t-shirts and designing cakes can enter the Threadcakes baking competition. Make a cake that best resembles a Threadless design for the chance to win great prizes—mostly t-shirts and chocolate! Check out the gallery of previous submissions at their website. Related Cute T-Shirt Alert: Horror Story-Inspired Fast Food 'Playin' in the Sprinkler' T-Shirt The Icecreamator T-Shirt... More

Blogwatch: Gazpacho

Since it's the middle of June, it is still a wee bit early for tomatoes. All you are likely to find at your local farmers' market are ones grown in greenhouses. Though tastier than those red styrofoam balls you find in the winter at grocery stores, they are nothing like all those big juicy hybrids and gorgeous heirlooms we will be seeing in July. Ree of Pioneer Women has a great recipe for gazpacho if you just must start eating tomatoes now. She adds a little organic tomato juice to pump up the flavor and goes untraditional with her toppings, adding shrimp, avocado, sour cream, and cilantro. Plus, if it's your first time making gazpacho, Ree gives great play-by-play... More

Cooking with a Friend: Some Menus Take Longer Than Others

Jennifer Maiser writes about locally and sustainably grown food. The Cooking with a Friend series chronicles her cooking and menu planning adventures with her neighbor, J. J. and I sat at the table on Sunday night wondering what hit us. This was supposed to be an easy week. Both of us are eating several meals out this week so we'd supposedly planned a light menu, and thought the cooking should be minimal. But we ended up with a menu that took longer to cook and cost more than what we'd remembered in a while. It wasn't really a bad thing, but we were puzzled that it all took so long. Looking at the list now, however, it's easy to see... More

Food-Themed Ties for Father's Day

Maybe gifting ties for Father's Day is a little trite, but think of all the funny looks he'll get when, instead of paisleys or stripes, they're covered in lo mein, matzah, and Spam. Here are nine ways Dad can get food all over himself without feeling like a slob. Pizza: If he hearts pizza enough to have it repeated all over his chest... $35.95 on zazzle.com Matzah: The bread of affliction, the neck accessory of joyfulness. $25 on jewishsource.com Dessert: If he has too many pink and red suits that need accessorizing, this black twill tie is full of maraschino cherries and what appears to be a strawberry shake. $14.95 on wildties.com... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Food Stamps at Farmers' Markets: An increasing number of local markets are accepting EBT cards. [AFC] Fortified Foods: Are they really all that much healthier? [WSJ] True Street Food: In Chandigarh, India, food vendor Tarachand Singh churns out chapati the way they've been made since ancient times, baking the flatbread in a buried tandoor at the side of the road. [NPR] Of Cookouts and Class in England: Sociological musings on grilling's place in class-conscious Britain. [Times Online] Can't You Hear That Thunder? The Land Down Under's iconic Vegemite is getting a wee makeover—a creamier version joins the original. [Seattle Times] A Matter of Semantics: Debate over using "anti-microbials" in livestock—as opposed to, you know, "antibiotics." [NYT] From the NSS... More

Cartons' Chemical Properties May Actually Improve Wine

If you've followed the rise of box wine over recent years, you've read the arguments that it's just as good as glass-bottle wine. And, indeed, there are a number of reputable, good-quality wines being packaged in cartons. But, now, an interesting story in The Economist says that, in some cases, the lined cardboard packaging may actually help produce better wine. It all starts with ladybugs. They eat grapes. Sometimes they get mixed in with the fruit as it's processed and their bodies produce chemicals that give the wine an off flavor. But researchers in Canada have found that the carton appears to absorb these chemicals. The cartons may therefore be best, The Economist says, for wines from regions with large... More

Giant Gum Sculptures by Simone Decker

Luxembourger artist Simone Decker shows what Venice would look like if covered in huge gobs of chewed-up gum in her sculpture series, Chewing in Venice. [via BOOOOOOOM] Related Chewed Gum T-Shirt Amazing Chewing Gum Art... More

Meet & Eat: Tressa Eaton, Serious Eats Intern

Note: Make way for another member of the Serious Eats family. Tressa is a recent Wesleyan University graduate who will be interning with us for the summer. We sort of hazed her yesterday by making her sit next to a platter of pastries from City Bakery. She was a fan of the pretzel croissant (she passed the test). Say hello to Tressa! Name: Tressa Eaton Location: New York Occupation: Full-time intern looking for a full-time job Guilty pleasures? Ordering Green & Black's 85% Dark Chocolate by the case. Roasted chicken skin--if you don't watch me, I'll denude your chicken in a flash. Good chocolate pudding. Bread with cold Irish butter. Pork products of all kinds. I don't know if I... More

Video: Tom Colicchio's 'True Blood' Drink for Vampires

Since the world just can't get enough vampires, Tom Colicchio does a little plug for the second season of HBO's True Blood, which returned on Sunday, with this red goo-resembling drink made of beet juice, roasted sugar snap peas, fennel, fava beans, and chicken stock. Colicchio is looking out for all those awkward scenarios when your vamp friends can't eat with the humans and are craving a 98.6°F drink. The video, after the jump.... More

Video: Portland's Nuevo Mexico Cart on VendrTV

On the latest episode of VendrTV, host Dan Delaney visits the Nuevo Mexico cart in Portland, Oregon, owned by Jesse Sandoval, former drummer of indie rock band The Shins. Using what he learned from growing up with his family's food cart, today Sandoval specializes in New Mexican cuisine, in particular sopaipillas (fried dough) stuffed with meat, beans, cheese, and green chile. There's also an appearance from former keyboardist of The Shins, Martin Crandall. Watch the video after the jump.... More

'My Life Is a Series of Liquids' from Matt Bites

Illustration by Matt Armendariz Photographer and food blogger Matt Armendariz recently illustrated the most prominent liquids in his life over at his blog, Matt Bites. No. 1 is red wine (86 percent, roughly), and at the bottom is water (0.6 percent; "Risk of personal dehydration: moderate to extreme") with coffee, nuoc cham, and soda chanh muoi in between. It's not just what liquids he ingests that's interesting, though, but the charming illustrations and commentary that go with them. Naturally, his post made me think about what my life in liquids would be. I'd pretty much just switch Matt's percentages for water and wine; I drink little else aside from water (don't have a taste for coffee or alcohol), along with... More

Paul McCartney Supports Meat Free Mondays to Cut Carbon Emissions

Paul McCartney is pushing for Meat Free Monday, a U.K.-based initiative encouraging people to reduce meat consumption to slow climate change, according to The Guardian. The goal is to persuade people that going veggie once a week—they've picked Mondays—will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from livestock, among the most serious contributors to global warming. According to Meat Free Monday's website, "The UK's Food Climate Research Network suggests that farm to fork is responsible for between 20 to 30 percent of global green house gas emissions. Livestock production is responsible for around half of these emissions." Linda McCartney Foods is showing its support by sharing a meatless recipe every Monday, starting yesterday with a vegetarian bolognese sauce. Other rock stars on board... More

Served: Friends at Restaurants

I blog by day and wait tables in a New York City restaurant by night. I'm excited to bring you Served, dispatches from the front of the house. Enjoy! One of the best parts of working in the New York restaurant biz is getting to visit my friends at work. I’ve met wonderful people, seen great new (and old) restaurants, and been inspired by creative dishes and badass cocktails. Having a complimentary arctic char tartare with basil and trout caviar or a glass of champagne sent your way is never not awesome. I always feel like the cool kid at school when I get to tour the kitchen or when the chef pulls up a chair and chats. And once... More

DIY Coffee Sleeve Frame

Since there are only so many macaroni-bordered frames and lanyards you can make, here's another cheap crafty idea for Father's Day. The Object Project walks us through the step-by-step process, from tracing to stitching to the placement of the velcro strip. [via Craftzine]... More

Hispanic Foods Moving Out of the 'Ethnic Aisle'

Hispanic products may no longer be hiding in supermarket aisle corners like the gluten-free breads and Manischewitz yolk-free noodles. Several major chains are expanding their specialty offerings to capture business from Latinos, the country's fastest-growing population and already almost one-sixth of the U.S. total in 2008, according to this MSNBC report. Walmart is in the process of converting two stores (one in Phoenix, the other in Houston) into Supermercados aimed at Hispanic shoppers. According to the Walmart website, the Houston store opened in late April and has a bakery with over 40 traditional sweet breads and fresh corn tortillas, and a meat department with milanesa (kind of like the Hispanic schnitzel), fajitas, and arrachera (similar to skirt steak). This... More

Blogwatch: Fresh Mint Tea

Gillian Carson of My Tiny Plot reminds us all just how civilized drinking tea can be with this couldn't-be-simpler recipe for mint tea. It's especially nice when you can say, like Carson does, "Aaah, that’s nice, and, gosh, aren’t I clever because I actually grew it myself." If you aren't growing mint, try it. It's almost impossible to kill because it is so highly invasive. As the days get muggier, this refreshing drink (whether made hot or cold, with honey or without) is the perfect thing to have by your side.... More

Retro-ish Oreo, Ritz Packaging at Target This Summer

For those of you who care about such things, The Dieline reports that Target will be selling limited-edition Oreo cookies and Ritz crackers in retro-ish packaging this summer. My advice? Don't open them, wait 20 years, and sell them on whatever auction site exists in the future—at that point, I'm sure, Target will be selling retro-2009 Oreos.... More

Fresh Food on TV: Weekday Edition

With all the channels on broadcast TV and cable—and the inevitable episode repeats—it's hard to sort out what's new or worthwhile. Let us sort it out for you so you don't miss anything worth watching. Times may vary with region; check your local listings for exact hour and channels. Recommended Shows: It's the season premiere of Gordon Ramsay's F Word on Wednesday. He'll have on Coronation Street’s Wendi Peters, Geri Halliwell, and Gavin & Stacey. Wednesday, 9 p.m. ET, BBC America This week's chefs on Top Chef Masters are Wylie Dufresne (wd-50), Suzanne Tracht (Jar), Graham Elliot Bowles (Graham Elliot Restaurant) and Elizabeth Falkner (Orson). Wednesday 10 p.m. ET, Bravo Monday (June 15) Good Eats (warning, a video plays automatically... More

How to Make Cupcake Kebabs

Not much explanation needed here, but there's more to the components than meets the eye. A video explaining the cupcake kebabs appears on the blog Cupcakes Take the Cake. These would be clever desserts to bring to a potluck cookout.... More

Last Week's Contest Winners

Cook the Book: Modern Spice: Catrona_sweeps, amylou61, mr guy, amaLosAngeles, and nsord33. Winners have been notified by email and also appear on our Contest Winners page. Thanks to all who entered.... More

Snapshots from South Korea: School Food

Last month I visited Seoul, South Korea, Here's a look at something I ate from my trip. For more, check out the rest of my Snapshots from South Korea. "There's a place nearby that serves food like you'd find in a school canteen, but a little more upscale," said Terry Rah, my friend and food guide for the morning. "Do you want to check it out?" Back in the U.S., I don't think the prospect of eating at a restaurant that served food akin to a school cafeteria's would ever appeal to me. I'm still haunted by the Aramark-made pizza, nachos, and sandwiches from my high school cafeteria. But Korean school food is a different matter, certainly not reminiscent of... More

Cook the Book: 'Seven Fires'

Francis Mallmann is South America's most famous chef. He's a TV star and owner of several restaurants in Argentina and Uruguay. Mallmann was classically trained in French cuisine and opened his first restaurant, at 19, in the upscale beach resort of Punta del Este, Uruguay. Mallmann was so successful that he could afford to shut down the restaurant in the off season and travel to Europe to train with Michelin-starred chefs. After 20 years of South American–inspired nouvelle cuisine, Mallmann "tired of making French food for wealthy Argentines." He ditched the stocks and sauces and returned to his roots. Mallmann embraced the cooking techniques that he grew up with, wood fires and cast iron pots. These basic tools paired with... More

Market Scene: Boysenberries, Figs, and Pluots the Cure to L.A.'s June Gloom

Ranier cherries. It's normal for a muted, Pacific Northwest–like grayness to blanket Los Angeles in the morning this time of year, but it usually burns off around noon, leaving the remainder of the day a lovely sunny 72 degrees. Over the last two weeks, however, the June gloom just wouldn't lift, creating a contagious case of sun-deprived crankiness that spread among Angelenos like swine flu. Fortunately, hints of blue sky cracked the cloud cover early yesterday morning that, combined with the early summer bounty at the Hollywood Farmers' Market (map), was therapeutic. Last month, Brooks cherries kicked off stone-fruit season with their tangy-crisp sweetness. Now the crimson-hued Bing and Ranier cherries (above), with their Fuji-apple-like shadings, dominate the market... More

Food-Related Idioms from 'I'm Not Hanging Noodles on Your Ears'

To fish the cake: to patch things up (Spanish) I'm Not Hanging Noodles on Your Ears and Other Intriguing Idioms From Around the World by Jag Ballah is a collection of idioms with their meanings accompanied by illustrations by New Yorker cartoonist Julia Suits. We have a few food-related idioms to share from this book, which comes out on June 16. More illustrations after the jump.... More

Serious Reads: A Short History of the American Stomach, by Frederick Kaufman

Plenty of ink has been spilled about twenty-first century Americans’ bizarre, conflicting views towards food—our simultaneous obsession with eating and weight loss, escalating struggles with anorexia and obesity, cultural love of both triple cheeseburgers and Master Cleanse diets. Such attitudes are usually characterized as distinctly modern phenomena, fueled by post-war advertising and the ever-growing influence of mass media. But in A Short History of the American Stomach, Frederick Kaufman argues otherwise. “The feast and the fast,” he writes, “have always been American twins.” Kaufman claims that elements of today’s food culture—from fad diets to binge eating to the equation of diet with virtue—date back to Puritan times. The United States, in his conception, “was and remains one of the most... More

The Fest: Our Humblest Apologies to All

"This has been my dream for nearly two decades, I still believe in that dream. And the image I had in mind wasn't what took place yesterday." First off, straight up: Our humblest apologies go out to the many serious eaters who came out to Shoreline yesterday, particularly those who came between the hours of noon and four. My 17-year dream became a humbling reality in those first few hours. We were so focused on getting the talent and purveyors together that we didn't realize how at risk we were logistically because more than 8,000 tickets were sold in the last week. Frankly, people were so excited about the fest that they all showed up early, which doesn't normally happen... More

The Great American Food & Music Fest Is Today!

It's a beautiful day in Mountain View, California, where today at Shoreline Amphitheatre, the first-ever Great American Food & Music Fest will take off. Three generations of the Bracewell family drove their Southside Market smoker truck all the way from Elgin, "the Sausage Capitol of Texas." Half a ton of Barney Greengrass smoked salmon arrived from New York, and Gary Greengrass is slicing it up. Katz's Deli, Anchor Bar Buffalo Wings, Tony Luke's Cheesesteaks and Roast Pork, Pink's Hot Dogs—the list goes on and on. Plus appearances from Bobby Flay, Guy Fieri, and a number of Bay Area chefs. The Chronicle called us "The United States of Yum"—and that's just about right. The Serious Eats team will be out... More

This Week's Tasty 10

According to our handy site-metering utility, the top 10 most delicious items across the Serious Eats family of sites this week were ... 1. Heinz Introduces World's Smallest Microwave, and It's USB-Powered "In England, Heinz has unveiled the world's smallest microwave—and it plugs into a USB port so you can nuke some grub at the desk or on the go." 2. Served: Your Waitress Gets Reprimanded "I hate being yelled at. Everyone hates being yelled at. But I am a people pleaser, and when the scolding starts, clearly I have failed to please." 3. Grilling: Barbecue Beans "There are few other sides so ubiquitous with both as barbecue beans. Although tastes vary widely across the nation, I can't think of... More

Photo of the Day: 'Back to the Future' Wedding Cake

Photograph from snoboogie on Flickr You really want a red velvet cake for your wedding, but you also want a model of the town square from Back to the Future? No problem: here's a Back to the Future-themed red velvet cake, brought to you by Caryn's Cakes. [via BuzzFeed] Related Photo of the Day: Pac-Man Wedding Cake Photo of the Day: Super Mario Kart Wedding Cake Photo of the Day: M&M Candy Wedding Cake... More

'The Best Fruit Salad Ever'

Over at Cheap Healthy Good, you'll find a recipe for what contributor Leigh calls "the best fruit salad ever"—doing away with the unpopular melons and bananas in favor of mango, peaches, and berries, spiked with lime, mint, and almond extract. Perfect summer cookout fare.... More

Taco Bell's Volcano Taco with Lava Sauce Returns to Menus Nationwide

Note: I got to visit the Taco Bell headquarters in Irvine, California, this week, hence all of this impressive knowledge. "It is true. I am back." First introduced last September, the Volcano Taco appeared on Taco Bell's menu for only three months. Whether it was the red crunchy taco shell (just the normal one with artificial dyes) or the spicy orange goop (which goes by "Lava Sauce") or the limited-time-only appeal, people were into it. Really into it. When it disappeared from menus, Facebook groups formed with folks acting like it was the fast-food apocalypse--even worse than when the Crazy Gordita Crunch left us. Thankfully, all the members of "I Refuse to Go to Taco Bell Until They Bring Back... More

Look Who's Talkin': Comments, Quips, and Tips We Have Known and Loved

There's so much going on in Talk week to week that we almost can't keep up. If you're in the same boat, here's a small selection of topics and responses that have piqued our interest this week. Bad Kitchen Habits "Great topic, and plenty to identify with in all of the comments so far. My worst kitchen habit is cooking barefoot. One of these days my chef's knife is going to land business-side down and it's going to hurt." —mother91 Roasting a Chicken and Baking a Cake at the Same Time? "I've baked pies and a turkey simultaneously at Thanksgiving, and had no serious consequences; ditto meatloaf and cobbler at another time of the year. But YMMV. If it's deeply... More

Caption Contest Winners

Congrats to the winners of our caption contest: gastronomeg, jmartin235, hellomello, and FoodFetish. You each have won 2 festival tickets to the Great American Food & Music Festival. Winners have been notified by email and also appear on our Contest Winners page. Thanks to everyone who entered! And the winning captions, in no particular order: "Ed Levine's Serious Diet Week 72: I've been trying to wing it, but I may chicken out."—gastronomeg "Mouth....burning...must keep...straight face..."—jmartin235 "Don’t look at me like that. I’m the missionary of delicious. Not the missionary of nutritious."—hellomello "We are professionals... Don't try this at home."—FoodFetish... More

Snapshots from the South of France: Chocolate Olives

Now I know why we stole the phrase Trompe d’Oeil right out of the French language. Absolutely everywhere we went in the South, from every tiny medieval town to every swarming, sultry city, we found chocolate olives. I’ve already told you about the black olive ice cream that we ate in Nice, but these don’t actually have any olives in them whatsoever. Instead, they are sort of the peanut M&M of the South of France. The outside is a candy sugar shell, inside dark or milk chocolate, and inside that, a toasted almond or a bit of praline. The lovely thing about them is that they are sold in vats, just like the olives outside in the market, in... More

Video: Ketchup Bottle Jam

What a fool I was to think I could only use a bottle of Heinz ketchup to dispense ketchup or frustrate me when it refused to release the ketchup I craved so badly. I could've also used it to make a bunch of noises and, with the power of my computer, edit the sounds so that they came together as pleasant beats and not sound like random knocks and clinks. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Ed Levine's Serious Diet, Week 71: Do You Eat Only When You're Hungry? What A Concept!

As I write this I am in a hotel room in Palo Alto awaiting the start of the The Great American Food & Music Fest. Thanks to the remarkable efforts of fest partners Jim Lewi, Steve Martin, and everyone at the Agency Group, our collective, nearly 20 year-old dream is going to be realized. But just because I have been thinking about a fest like this for twenty years doesn't mean I have to eat twenty years' worth of food there. That, serious eaters, represents real progress. In fact, I realized today that It's not all that pleasant to force-feed myself like a foie gras-producing goose at the fest, that it's okay, even desirable to stop eating when you're full.... More

It's a Little Quiet in This Corner

Aww. These Talk threads have only a few replies as of today. Anyone have anything to add? Serious Efforts: Recipe for Chinese-Style Braised Rabbit "I'm thinking something like this: brown and slow cook the rabbit until the meat is falling off the bone, cool, shred meat, reduce braising liquid, reheat, and serve over noodles. I'd like to have some Chinese eggplant in there, as well as to use a can of fermented/salted black beans I have. A rich, salty, spicy, slightly sweet taste is what I'm going for. I've looked around, and I've found rabbit braises over noodles, and black bean braises with other meats, what do you all think about combining the ingredients of the latter (for instance) with... More

Did The Vietnamese Invent The Frappuccino?

Photo from Gourmet.com Probably not, Matthew Amster-Burton at Gourmet.com concludes. After noticing the country's penchant for sweetened iced coffee and blended fruit shakes, he had wondered if the Vietnamese weren't the first to make the Frappuccino. His theory is soon disproved—since blenders have only recently become available to the masses in Vietnam, he learns, they couldn't have invented the blended coffee drink. Still, it seems like he's onto something: after sending his own Vietnamese iced coffee for a whirl in the blender, he's plenty happy with his own Vietnamese-style Frappuccino. Even if it's not quite traditional.... More

What Fictional Foods Do You Wish Were Real?

The Houston Press put together a slideshow of twenty foods from TV, movies, and literature that they wish really existed. Entries include Romulan Ale from Star Trek, Harry Potter's Butterbeer, and the "tomacco" plant from The Simpsons (an addictive hybrid of tomato and tobacco). I'd add in the fizzy drink Frobscottle, from Roald Dahl's book The BFG—tasting "of vanilla and cream, with just the faintest trace of raspberries on the edge of the flavour." And coolest of all, the bubbles go downwards. What fictional foods would you like to eat?... More

Get Your Xocolatl Mole Bitters Now

Over at The Cocktail Chronicles, Serious Eats contributor Paul Clarke raves about Bittermens's newly released Xocolatl Mole Bitters, whose "durable and versatile flavor," he claims, makes for "explosively good cocktails." Check out his review, or order them now.... More

Come on in 'The Kitchn'

Each week we round up our favorite posts and recipes from our friends at The Kitchn. This week, the Kitchn explains why boiling bagels is the key to deliciousness, even if it seems counter-intuitive to throw bread into boiling water. Also on the Kitchn, lime and coconut truffles, a blog devoted to food in jars, a less annoying way to prepare leafy greens, and bannock (bet you've never heard of it).... More

Critic-Turned-Cook Hits The Pit

Critic Turned Cook follows former Seattle Post-Intelligencer food critic Leslie Kelly on her journey away from the keyboard and into the kitchen as she trains at various Tom Douglas restaurants. Take it away, Leslie! Can I please see a show of hands among veteran cooks of who got their start working the dish pit? It's a dirty job, but a foot in the door. One of the more memorable passages in Soul of a Chef, the book by Michael Ruhlman, is the image of a young Thomas Keller sweeping floors in his first restaurant. Scut work is hard and humbling, but it builds character, right? Makes you appreciate your spot on the line. That's what I kept telling myself as... More

Video: Gourmet Dude Circa 1983

Today we travel back in time with Gourmet Dude to 1983, when rattails were cool, and Tab was the diet cola of choice. We suspect Gourmet Dude might have actually landed back in 1984, the year Tetris was launched. Ah, good times. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Francis Mallmann's Grilling Tips

"Fire was a constant part of growing up for my two brothers and me, and the memories of that home continue to define me." This week's grilling tips come from Francis Mallmann, an Argentinian chef distinguished by his enthusiasm for fire in cooking. In his book, Seven Fires: Grilling the Argentine Way, he describes the ways in which fire is essential to Argentinian identity: "I was through with the fancy sauces... I wanted to create a cuisine based on my Andean heritage. My cuisine became, for want of a better word, barbaric in its attempts to achieve the pinnacle of flavors through the use of fire, whether the massive heat of a bonfire, or the slow steady warmth of dying... More

Seriously Italian: Abbracci Cookies

One of my favorite Mulino Bianco treats are Abbracci. Translated as an embrace or hug, these cookies are a variation on the vanilla-on-chocolate theme; little crescents of vanilla and chocolate dough are clasped together in a passionate cuddle. More

What to Expect from Tonight’s 'Top Chef Masters' Premiere

Photo from Bravo.com Tonight at 10 p.m. ET is the premiere of Bravo's new Top Chef Masters—a "culinary clash of the titans," where 24 chefs will go head-to-head in the same sort of kitchen battles that fans of previous seasons have known to grow and love. Only this time, instead of ambitious sous chefs and caterers, the contestants are those who have already earned their culinary fame and fortune—like Wylie Dufresne (WD-50), Graham Elliot Bowles (Graham Elliot), or Rick Bayless (Frontera Grill). With more talent in the kitchen, there's sure to be more drama at Judge's Table. It's one thing when judges like Tom Colicchio, himself an experienced chef, call out an uppity young cook for overcooked fish or excessively... More

Weekend Cook and Tell Round Up: Toaster Cuisine

Welcome to the Weekend Cook and Tell Round Up. Last week's topic was Toaster Cuisine: Make something using the toaster oven. Here are some of the highlights: Megannesta made several of the toaster recipes that Eric Ripert featured on this blog. Raspberry clafoutis and herbed chicken tenders with honey mustard were some of her favorites. Machellebelle made some simple pizzas, which is a big deal when she lives in a country (South Korea) where sweet potatoes and corn are popular pizza toppings. Kmgagne and michellec MadelynRodriguez made Cheesy Spinach, Almond, Mushroom and Tomato Lasagna with her niece. Check out the results over at Karma-Free Cooking. Thank you to everyone who participated in this week's Weekend Cook and Tell. Be sure... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Doing Without: Recession has turned many into "flexitarians." [Gourmet] RIP: Norman Brinker, casual-dining pioneer (Chili's, Bennigan's, Steak and Ale), dies at 78. [NYT] Stock Tips: Ten suggestions for making delicious broths. [Guardian] Sandwich Tips: Advice on making a shining example of this lunch staple. "... Don't worry about how ingredients look, only how they taste." [Chicago Tribune] A Penny Earned: Tips for saving money at the grocery store. "Supermarkets tend to put the most expensive items at eye level." [Seattle Times] Hipster Foodies: Meet the übercool folks behind L.A.'s indie dining scene. [LAT] Wait Just a Minute! Why "HFCS-free" is not necessarily healthier. [Atlantic Food] New Potato Salad: Rethinking the picnic classic. [NPR] WWWD? Wendy's to roll out boneless... More

The Thrill of the Bean

Paupered Chef Nick discovers the thrill of 90-minute, no soak beans: "The beans were cooked. Every single one was tender and ready to go. . . How could this be? This question drove me mad, because I have been cooking beans nearly every week for the past year, and now I realize I've been doing it all wrong."... More

Serious Heat: Where Do You Buy Your Spices?

Note: On Thursdays, Andrea Lynn, associate editor of Chile Pepper magazine, drops by to drop some Serious Heat. I just returned from a trip to Morocco with an extra bag packed with spices--ras el hanout, dried ginger root, long peppercorns--the options were seemingly limitless. While I lugged my spices around Morocco, a friend on the trip said she would just keep ordering all hers from Penzey's. Fair enough—Penzey's does produce first-rate spices. My supply of spices comes from a few different locales. In New York, my go-to source for spice is Kalustyan's. Whenever I'm in Atlanta, I make sure to hit up the DeKalb Farmer's Market. And when I'm in Alabama, I steal some chile powder from my mother. She... More

Chewed Gum T-Shirt

From afar, a pleasant pattern of colorful blobs. Up close, chewed gum wads. But still pleasant looking, unlike the underside of my gum wad-dotted desk in second grade. This shirt designed by artist Dan Colen is available at honeyee.com for 10,500 yen, or $107. Perhaps a DIY version is in order. [via swissmiss]... More

The Hard-To-Find Grocer

No, this is not the name of a grocery store hidden behind some trees—it is an online grocery store for items that are hard to find. At the Hard-To-Find Grocer, you can find various rare food products, like Sioux City Berry Berry Soda or Van Camp Beanee Weenee. It also carries products from larger brands that often don't make it into stores, such as Duncan Hines Strawberry Supreme Cake. Items are added to the site based on suggestions and requests. Sadly, it doesn't yet have the food of my childhood, Tastykakes (only available in the mid-Atlantic), so I'll have to stay near Philadelphia to get my fix. [via Manhattan Users Guide]... More

Video: Obama Drastically Scales Back Goals for America After Visiting Denny's

President Barack Obama had such high hopes for America...until he went to Denny's. Now he's aiming less for being a world leader and setting more reasonable goals for the American people: Before we reclaim global leadership, we must first stop eating six sausages and a pound of eggs covered in syrup for breakfast, and we must stop leaving the house in sweatpants. Is he asking for too much? Would you be willing to give up your mountainous plate of syrup-drenched sausages and eggs? Only time will tell. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Death Star Grill on eBay

Photographs by Bryan Tate "The basic idea was to have a working grill that looked like the Death Star and could actually cook something," says sheet metal worker Bryan Tate. And thus the Death Star Grill was born out of two bottom-halves of Weber grills, welding, and barbecue paint. You have just three more days to get your hands on this grilling beauty on eBay. [via Unique Daily]... More

Cooking with a Friend: Duck Fried Rice and Corned Beef

Jennifer Maiser writes about locally and sustainably grown food. The Cooking with a Friend series chronicles her cooking and menu planning adventures with her neighbor, J. A week in Southern California turned into nearly two. By the time I returned to San Francisco I was worried that J. had moved on and was ready to break-up with our little cooking project. After discussing this over drinks the night I returned, we realized that we were both as excited as ever to continue cooking together. I drove the majority of the menu plan this week. I'm desperately waiting for tomatoes to get to the market (it will be about another month before I start purchasing them), and expect our menu to... More

Do Men Cook Differently Than Women in Restaurants? Can You Tell the Difference?

"It's impossible to glean by looking and tasting whether a dish was created by a man or a woman." Photographs by Belathée Photography On Monday night I was one of two sacrificial guys (Alinea's Grant Achatz was the other) on a panel discussion titled Gender Confusion: Unraveling the Myths of Gender in the Restaurant Kitchen. We delved into the following fascinating, potentially freighted, and cosmic question: Do women working in restaurant kitchens have discernibly different cooking styles than their male counterparts? And, can supposedly sensitive palates tell the difference? Food & Wine editor-in-chief Dana Cowin and thoughtful writer–food philosopher Gwen Hyman, co-author of Urban Italian (written with her chef husband Andrew Carmellini), were the women Achatz and I got to... More

Frying Rabbit Offal in Duck Fat

It's tasty! Photograph by Drew Drew of Toothpaste for Dinner has been on a duck fat-frying roll even since getting a tub of duck fat and not knowing what to do with it. In the latest installment of his duck fat adventures, he fries rabbit offal with awesome results ("The heart was like a piece of candy made of meat"), giving them a 9.5 out of 10. Lil' bunny organs, you've done good. Related Where to Find Duck Fat French Fries Across the Country What's your fantasy duck fat recipe? [SE Talk, 6/13/08]... More

How to Introduce Craft Beers to New Beer Drinkers

Photograph by Becca Dilley of Heavy Table. "What’s the best way to deliver a beer-resistant friend or family member into the warm and loving arms of craft beer?" asks James Norton of Heavy Table. As a nondrinker my answer would be, "Lie to me and tell me it's something else," but Norton has more helpful advice. He says to steer clear of lagers and hoppy craft brews and to appeal to the personal tastes of your craft-beer newbie. His group taste tests nine beers in three categories—fruit beers, wits, and stouts—for an introduction to "the joys of craft beer." Read his group's reviews to find out which ones they would most recommend.... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Real or Fake Headline? "Airlines reduce size of spoons to save fuel during recession." Real! [Telegraph] Shoulda Just Paid It: California woman sentenced to year in jail for skipping out on $20 bill. [bakersfieldnow.com] Calculated Risk: Researchers exposing kids to allergenic foods in attempt to cure them. [WaPo] More Ray Ray: Rachael Ray Show renewed for two more seasons. [Inquisitr] Jon, Kate, and Bam: A recap of Emeril's appearance on the inexplicably popular Jon & Kate Plus 8. [WSJ] Strange Brew: Indie brewers team up with major suds-slingers to fight federal taxes. [Atlantic Food] Nudie Foodie: U.K. celebs pose naked to save bluefin tuna. [Telegraph] Ew, Gross: As jobs move increasingly indoors, we're counterintuitively coming into greater contact with... More

Serious Cheese: Grilled Cheese, Georgian Style

Photograph from Goulven Champenois on Flickr The combination of crusty dough and melted cheese has spawned some of the greatest foods in the world. Pizza and grilled cheese come first to mind for many Americans, but the United States can hardly claim ownership. Indeed, thousands of miles across the world, in a land wedged between the Black Sea to the west and the Caspian Sea to the east, the bread-and-cheese meme has perhaps reached its apex in the form of the Georgian food khachapuri—literally, "cheese bread."... More

Heinz Introduces World's Smallest Microwave, and It's USB-Powered

In England, Heinz has unveiled the world's smallest microwave—and it plugs into a USB port so you can nuke some grub at the desk or on the go. Called the Beanzawave, it's obviously a ploy to increase brand awareness for Heinz baked beans, but you could also warm some coffee, tea, or maybe a meatball or two. Don't get your wallet out yet, though. The 7.4-by-6.2-by-5.9-inch device is still in prototype stage, and who knows if it'll ever see the inside of stores. Apart from its size, the key breakthrough is the use of a combination of mobile phone radio frequencies to create the heat to cook both on the outside and within in under a minute...."It is possible... More

Your Mission, Should You Choose to Accept It ...

Photograph from Foodistablog on Flickr Food writer Michael Ruhlman has thrown down the gauntlet on his blog, where he's challenging readers to make a BLT from scratch. Don't worry, you don't have to raise the pig: From scratch means you grow your tomato, you grow your lettuce, you cure your own bacon or pancetta, you bake your own bread (wild yeast preferred and gets higher marks but is not required), you make your own mayo. All other embellishments, creative interpretations of the BLT welcome. This sounds like a great idea. I think we're going to have to buy one of those upside-down tomato buckets and try growing some plants in the SE office window.... More

Video: An Ode to the Sandwich

"Sandwich, sandwich, I'm in love with you," sings Parry Gripp in his song "Sandwich." But as much as he loves this sandwich, he doesn't really go into the specifics about the relationship. Whether or not you want to know, Edd Gould fills the gaps with his animation of the song depicting a day in the life of a man and his beloved sandwich. See-saw, milkshake, sunset—you know, the works. Watch the video after the jump.... More

'Top Chef Masters' Host Kelly Choi: 'Food Bloggers Are Mean'

"The whole idea of blogging about let’s say a new restaurant opening and really cutting down on them—if there’s anything really negative, the form of being anonymous and doing it rampantly is cowardly. There’s definitely a place for constructive critique, but every now and then you come across a review for a restaurant, meal or service that’s just biting, and that’s really uncool. I don’t see it too often, but if you have a real complaint and if you feel that strongly, I hope that person expressed that in the restaurant. You can say anything if you do it nicely." [True/Slant]... More

Serious Green: Where You Can't Grow, Adopt

guardian.co.ukSo you might have cleared space on your balcony for a container garden, or even planted a little plot in your backyard. Still, you may not have the time, space, or expertise to branch out--say, with a peach tree, or an olive tree, or even a few pigs. But if you want a farm harvest without the farm, consider adoption. At the Masumoto Family Farm near Fresno, California--at times a supplier to Blue Hill, Per Se, and Chez Panisse--Elberta peach trees are available for "adoption." Each winter, prospective owners apply to own a peach tree; the Masumotos take care of planting, pruning, and raising your baby. Then at midsummer harvest, adopters come out to the farm to pick the trees... More

Served: Your Waitress Gets Reprimanded

I blog by day and wait tables in a New York City restaurant by night. I'm excited to bring you Served, dispatches from the front of the house. Enjoy! I hate being yelled at. Everyone hates being yelled at. But I am a people pleaser, and when the scolding starts, clearly I have failed to please. Sunday night was ridiculously slow, in part because of the Tonys. The theaters were dark, and many of our customers are theater people. It was one of those evenings where we folded a whole lot of napkins for lack of people to actually wait on. We listened to nostalgic music and sang along. We nibbled on the new dishes the chef had put up... More

Hunch.com Answers Some of Your Most Vexing Food-Related Questions

Hunch, a new website co-founded by former Flickrista Caterina Fake, is a flowchartlike tool designed to help you come to a decision after asking you a series of questions. Hunch is in beta now, but you can sign up for an invitation to check it out. The first thing I did once I got my account (my invitation arrived within a day) was check out the food-related topics on the site (after the jump).... More

Is Street Food the New Bacon?

Where's the love for the truck selling Sponge Bob ice cream? Street food has definitely entered a new era, maybe even reaching the faddish extremes of bacon. Last week the Wall Street Journal was yet another publication to notice that the new breed of street food "is aggressively gourmet, tech-savvy and politically correct." While I'm all for crème brûlée from a kitchen next to a steering wheel, it's hard not to wonder how this new-agey mobile food culture will affect the old guard. What about the non-organic, questionably hygienic vendors without Blackberrys or Facebook accounts? Are they going to survive this moment?... More

Fresh Food on TV: Weekday Edition

With all the channels on broadcast TV and cable—and the inevitable episode repeats—it's hard to sort out what's new or worthwhile. Let us sort it out for you so you don't miss anything worth watching. Times may vary with region; check your local listings for exact hour and channels. Recommended Shows: There are two series premieres this week! The first is the strangely awesome (or awesomely strange?) Food Party on Tuesday night. The premiere episode has her realizing that she's in love with herself. So she decides to marry herself. Yeah. Tuesday, 11:15 p.m. ET, IFC Next, on Wednesday it's the premiere of Top Chef Masters. Four famous chefs compete each episode to win donations to their selected charities. The... More

Cute T-Shirt Alert: Horror Story-Inspired Fast Food

Combine your love for horror stories, fast food, and cute things with this new shirt from Threadless illustrated by Mitch Ansara featuring characters like Mummy Burger and ZomBQ Rib Sandwich. $18 from Threadless. Although this shirt isn't on sale, many other Threadless shirts are on sale for $5 and $10 until Wednesday. Related Pancakes Mountain T-Shirt, Plus Other Pancake Outerwear The Icecreamator T-Shirt 'Playin' in the Sprinkler' T-Shirt Cute T-Shirt Alert: 'This Is How I Roll'... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Nice Wheels: Whole Foods launches delivery by bike in Austin, Texas. [Relish Austin] Purple Carrot: Researchers looking at ways the root vegetable can color foods in response to upcoming EU warning labels on synthetic dyes. [Mercury News] Jacques Pépin: The legendary French chef's daily intake in the latest installment of "My Day on a Plate." [Gourmet] We Belong Together: Mariah stuffing her face while making latest album; will tone down once it's released. [NYP] Cheap Meal from Top Chefs: Three Top Chef Masters share recipes for a dinner for four for $20. [Today] Apricots: An unexpected March frost and unusually wet spring make for an even shorter season than usual for this fruit. [Chronicle] By Any Other Name: EU... More

Meet & Eat: Caroline Russock, Cook the Book Contributor

Note: Please say hello to Cook the Book contributor Caroline Russock! Every week she sifts through our bookshelf for cookbooks to spotlight, picking recipes each day from cream cheese pie to Welsh rarebit. After graduating from the Pratt Institute with a fine arts degree, Caroline worked in restaurants everywhere from San Diego to Sicily. Without further ado, let's get to know Caroline! Name: Caroline Russock Location: Brooklyn, New York Occupation: Serious Eats Cook the Book contributor, and restaurant server Favorite comfort food? I have a soft spot (literally) for anything mushy. Nothing makes me happier than polenta, risotto, and grits. Guilty pleasures? Bar food. Wings, chicken fingers, burgers. I think it might have something to do with my weakness for... More

Follow @seriouseats on Twitter and Win

Now that we're somewhat close to five digits I'm putting on my Ashton hat and want to reach 10,000 followers. To that end, we're doing a series of giveaways from now until Follower 10,000 shows up. We've picked 10 numbers at random, from 8,550 to 10,000. Follow us (@seriouseats), and if you correspond to one of the numbers, you'll get a choice of one of any number of food-related books we've got here on hand.... More

Market Scene: Seattle's Neighborhood Farmers' Markets

Phinney Ridge farmers' market. Photographs from Macartisan on Flickr Pike Place Market is one of Seattle's must-visit landmarks, but the 102-year-old icon is not the best place to meet actual farmers. Most of the purveyors sell the same produce you can buy in the supermarket. (Except on Wednesdays and Sundays in the summers when local growers set up shop on the street outside the rambling tourist attraction.) To find the true farm-to-table connection, savvy shoppers know to head to one of the dozens of neighborhood markets that sprout weekly around the city this time of year. It's possible to hit a different neighborhood each day of the week and truly get a flavor for this food-loving community. On Wednesday... More

Cook the Book: 'Modern Spice'

Most home cooks would think nothing of whipping up an Asian-inspired stir fry, some tacos, or a bowl of linguine with pesto for a quick weeknight dinner. Although these dishes are not American in origin, they have worked their way into our culinary vernacular over the years. While Indian food is not exactly exotic, it has not really been widely adapted into most American home kitchens. I have a feeling that most of us are not familiar with the techniques, or stocked with the ingredients to make a batch of saag paneer and some chapati for dinner. But why not? In the introduction to Modern Spice, Mark Bittman speculates that inaccessibility of ingredients is the primary reason why most Americans... More

Video: How to Make Green Screen Cookies from 'Food Party'

Get ready for tomorrow night's Food Party debut on IFC by watching the show's creator Thu Tran demonstrate how to make Green Screen cookies. All you need is Fantasy Potion! You know...Fantasy Potion, available at your local grocery store or bodega. "Just ask the man very nicely and he will give it to you," Tran says. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Attention Word Nerds: Food-Related Tom Swifties

Over the weekend, the New York Times' Schott's Vocab, a blog devoted to language, asked readers to submit Tom Swifties, a phrase with a punning relationship between the adverb describing the speaker and the action. There were some good food-centric ones in the mix: "Matzoh balls and gefilte fish for me," said Tom judiciously. “I adore hamburgers," he said with relish. “Why, that’s the best fruit smoothie I’ve ever tasted!” Tom said with aplomb. “I’m starving!” the crow squawked ravenously. Related New Food Words in 2009 AP Stylebook Food Words in the 2009 National Spelling Bee The Term 'Housemade' Is the New 'Homemade'... More

First Look at the New Berkeley Bowl West in the Bay Area

Seven years and $30 million in the making, Berkeley Bowl West, a younger sibling of the more than 30-year-old Berkeley Bowl (what some call the independent grocery store Promised Land) in South Berkeley, California, is finally open. According to the blog Scavenging, the deli section "could outfit every picnic in the state, and "its 16 grocery aisles resemble airport runways (for small planes, but still)." Eventually, there will also be an adjoining cafe with made-to-order dishes from the wood-fired oven and rotisserie. Berkeley Bowl West 920 Heinz Avenue , Berkeley CA 94710 (at Eighth Street; map) 510-898-9555; berkeleybowl.com... More

Snapshots from Scotland: Deep-Fried Mars Bars

"After a few minutes, I was handed what looked like a single frozen fish stick on a plate." I had heard about the art of candy bar-frying for a long time and I didn't explore it for all sorts of reasons. Was fear one of them? Yes. And the bizarreness of it all too. So, I toughened up and headed to the Carron Fish Bar in Stonehaven, Scotland, the birthplace of the deep-fried Mars Bar. What was I afraid of? Yes, they must be really fattening, but lots of other foods are too and most of them tend not to scare me. And it was the sort of folk food I normally would revel in. I mean, it wasn't fugu.... More

Tips for Choosing Supermarket Coffee

Hardcore coffee geeks wouldn't even consider buying anything but freshly roasted whole coffee beans from a skilled local roaster. But what if you don't live near an Intelligentsia, Stumptown, or Blue Bottle roasting location? In that case, the Atlantic Food Channel gives some tips for selecting the freshest coffee beans from your local grocery store. Among them: Few markets date their bulk bins. If coffee is properly packaged in a valve bag (the bags with the internal buttons and little slits), it probably will taste fresher than bulk coffee, which has been exposed to atmosphere. Put your nose up to the valve and squeeze the bag. Evaluate the aroma. And this:... More

'The Next Food Network Star' Season 5 Premiere

The fifth season of The Next Food Network Star premiered tonight with ten mostly amateur chefs all competing for a television show slot on Food Network. It was a little tough to judge who we'd grow to love and who'd make us cringe, but there were some definite favorites (cough, Michael). The contestants were thrown into a house Real World-style, but there was no time for hot tub introductions. The gang was immediately split up into two teams at Butter restaurant in Manhattan, cooking for 75 guests at Food Network's Sweet Sixteen bash. The invite list mostly included food hotshots (Giada de Laurentiis, Bobby Flay, Iron Chef Morimoto) and for some reason, Nancy O'Dell from Access Hollywood. After the... More

How to Make Apple Cider

Photograph from Savvy Housekeeping If you really like apple cider (the alcoholic kind, that is), Savvy Housekeeping shares a tutorial for how to make apple cider at home. Apple juice, brown sugar, wine yeast, beer-making equipment, and a few weeks of patience will reward you with 42 bottles of apple cider. Related Bathtub Gin and Other DIY Alcohols Make Your Own Wine at Home How to Make a Watermelon Keg... More

This Week in Recipes

What to Make When There's Nothing in the Fridge: Nick Kindelsperger shares the recipe for a simple and aromatic chickpea and tuna salad. A French Pizza Tart: Kerry Saretsky describes how she and her mother shared a taste for whole wheat pissaladière pizza with tapenade, pine nuts, and goat cheese. Perfect for Summer Evenings: A recipe for a new potato and summer squash salad that begs for cookouts and nights in the backyard. Perhaps Not Hell, But Heaven: Ed's chosen recipe for Sunday brunch, Eggs in Hell, will require a large glass of cold milk A Perfect Finale: A great fresh strawberry and ricotta tart, another use for in-season strawberries!... More

In Season: Green Peas

©iStockphoto.com/ValentynVolkov Green peas remind me of the steamy Georgia weather and lazy days filled with ice cold lemonade and pretty pink sundresses. Starting in May, just as we shed our own winter coats, it is time for the peas to jump out of the pod and be gobbled up by pea fans nationwide. These emerald gems have been around for a long time--in fact, the Chinese believed that their emperor Shu Nung, discovered peas 5,000 years ago. Legend has it that he wandered around the countryside observing and collecting plants, looking for those which might be suitable for food or medicine--one of which was green peas. Later in 17th century Europe, green peas were a delicacy and seen as... More

This Week in Eating Out

Don't Call It Water Ice: Robyn Lee describes patbingsu, a popular South Korean shaved ice dish. Pizza in Boston: Carey Jones checks out the Sicilian slices at Galleria Umberto in Boston, recently listed as one of America's 25 best pizzerias by Alan Richman. Mini-Burgers, Properly Named: While Mini Bites is an appropriate name for the Californian burger place, Damon Gambuto was entirely disappointed with the tiny burgers found here. Under the Sea on Central Park South: Nick Solares visits Marea and is amazed by the casual atmosphere and the perfectly prepared seafood.... More

This Week's Tasty 10

According to our handy site-metering utility, the top 10 most delicious items across the Serious Eats family of sites this week were ... 1. Who Makes the Best Vanilla Ice Cream? "With summer pie season around the corner, it's important to have the right vanilla ice cream for proper scoopage on top. We conducted a blind tasting with six readily available nationwide brands: Häagen-Dazs, Ben and Jerry's, Blue Bunny, Breyers, Horizon, and Edy's (aka Dreyer's in the western states). They were judged on a scale of 1 to 5, according to texture, flavor richness, and overall vanilla-ness. The results, in descending order...." 2. Needed: A Meal That Would Win a Man's Heart! "I have recently decided i am ready to... More

Novelty Salt and Pepper Shakers Club

Example of "tallboys" and "huggers" from the Novelty Salt and Pepper Shakers Club For some reason I feel better knowing that such a thing as the Novelty Salt and Pepper Shakers Club exists. Although the website doesn't look like it's been redesigned since the mid-90s, it's up to date; there's information about their upcoming convention this July in Knoxville, Tennessee, and you can check out recent photos of shakers in their newsletter. Brush up on your shaker lingo with this handy guide to shaker designs (I'm a fan of the "huggers"). If you feel at home while browsing the site, joint the club! Related Salt-n-Pepa Salt and Pepper Shakers Cute Salt and Pepper Shakers How to Make Nesting Doll... More

Videos: 'Target Women' on Fairytale-Themed Food Commercials

"So ladies, just relax; someday your prince is gonna come and he's gonna bring a fun product and when he does you'll live happily ever after!" —Sarah Haskins What products is Sarah Haskins of Target Women talking about? Oh, you know—cream cheese, frozen rolls, milk. The things women love! Or the things advertisers want women to love. Same difference. Watch the video after the jump.... More

Next Tuesday, 'Food Party' Debuting on IFC

Cute, colorful, wacky, always awesome, and sometimes creepy puppet-heavy show Food Party is making the jump from YouTube to your television set! Next Tuesday, June 9, at 11:15 p.m. Food Party will debut on IFC with six episodes already lined up. Like before, the show stars creator Thu Tran, lots of puppets, and lots of food in a setting that you won't find on Food Network. If you don't have cable, Thu says, "this is a good excuse to become friends with someone who does! Who knows! You may become very good friends!" If you live in New York City, another alternative is to attend the Food Party Cable Television World Premiere Party next Tuesday night at Monkey Town... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Collard Crazy: Cooking up yellow collards—not green—in Ayden, North Carolina, the “Collard Capital of the World.” [NPR] Tomato Truce: Two Florida farms strike an agreement to increase tomato pickers’ wages. [AP] Foodie Facebook: Gourmet launches social networking site—it's like Evite meets Epicurious. [gourmetguestlist.com] Functional or Fortified? Are vitamin-enriched foods healthier for you or just marketing ploys? [Atlantic Food] Healthy Choice: How to tell if a recipe is cheap, healthy, and good just by reading it. [Cheap Healthy Good]... More

Fresh Food on TV: Weekend Edition

With all the channels on broadcast TV and cable—and the inevitable episode repeats—it's hard to sort out what's new or worthwhile. Let us sort it out for you so you don't miss anything worth watching. Times may vary with region; check your local listings for exact hour and channels. Recommended Show: It's the season 5 premiere of The Next Food Network Star Sunday night. The finalists are challenged to cater a birthday party for the Food Network filled with Food Network stars. Sunday, 9 p.m. ET Food Network Saturday (June 6) 5 Ingredient Fix (warning, a video plays automatically on site): "Rise and Shine." Claire makes breakfast: French toast with strawberries and cream, scrambled eggs over asparagus, maple-candied bacon, and... More

Snapshots from South Korea: Patbingsu, a Popular Shaved Ice Dessert

Last month I visited Seoul, South Korea, for the first time. Here's a look at something I ate from my one-week trip. For more, check out the rest of my Snapshots from South Korea. Patbingsu, a shaved ice-based dessert loaded with sweet toppings such as chopped fruit, condensed milk, fruit syrup, and red beans, is so popular in South Korea that you can find it at most fast food restaurants in addition to cafes and bakeries. One of my friends even highly recommended the version from KFC ("My family went there all the time during our trip to Seoul!"). Although I wouldn't have been opposed to breaking my patbingsu virgnity at KFC, it was probably for the best that Dan... More

Look Who's Talkin': Comments, Quips, and Tips We Have Known and Loved

There's so much going on in Talk week to week that we almost can't keep up. If you're in the same boat, here's a small selection of topics and responses that have piqued our interest this week. July 4th: What Are Your Plans? "OK, this is obviously not the answer the Serious Eats community, who is planning picnics, etc., is looking for, but I'm getting married! And I'm really excited! To stick to the theme, however, I will be eating well. Raghavan Iyer is our chef and he is making yummy appetizers like crispy rounds with chutney and shrimps and open-faced samosas. And he's making lamb and chicken for the banquet Most exciting, however? Mango cardamom cheesecake with a pistachio... More

Video: Eric Schlosser on 'The Colbert Report'

"God gave us dominion over the animals. Okay? If we can get 50,000 of them in one spot, why shouldn't we?" —Stephen Colbert In Stephen Colbert's interview with Eric Schlosser, author of Fast Food Nation and co-producer of upcoming documentary Food, Inc., Schlosser lays down the problems with factory farming and genetically modified corn as Colbert tries to derail him by pointing out that "fecal material" is poop and thinking about the superpowers he could get from corn. And so much more! Watch the video after the jump.... More

It's a Little Quiet in This Corner

Not a bad week! Only a couple unanswered or lightly treaded threads. Anyone have anything to add to these two? What to do with all the Chiles I got in Oaxaca? "I got Chile Tuxta (or Tuxtla), Chile Pequin, Pastilla Oaxaqueno and powdered Mole Verde. And dried jicama flowers, which will become margaritas and iced tea. Other than reconstituting the chiles and putting them in salsa, or making a rub for meat, does anyone have any ideas what to do with them? Has anyone used these chiles before?" Seafood in San Francisco: specifically halibut "Looking for a seafood restaurant in San Francisco that offers more Pacific fish, specifically Alaskan salmon and halibut. So far, Scoma's seems to be a good... More

Ed Levine's Serious Diet, Week 70: The Diet Blues, or 'Can One Bad Day Screw Up 70 Weeks of Progress?'

I should have seen it coming. There I was, standing around kibitzing and hanging out in the San Francisco Chronicle food section's amazing kitchen Wednesday at lunch time, surrounded by some of the foods we are going to be serving serious eaters at the Great American Food & Music Fest: Pink's Chili Dogs, Southside Market barbecue, Anchor Bar Buffalo wings, Junior's Cheesecake, Tony Luke's sandwiches, Katz's pastrami, Graeter's ice cream, and Barney Greengrass's bagels with smoked salmon and cream cheese. How could I possibly resist eating a lot of the food arrayed before me standing up, thereby violating every diet rule known to man and woman-kind. Well, I didn't. I had more than a few bites of many of the... More

It's National Doughnut Day!

Happy National Doughnut Day! In honor of the big day, the dueling doughnut heavyweights are giving away morning treats. At Dunkin’ Donuts, any drink purchase scores a bonus doughnut. Krispy Kreme is doing a straight giveaway—one freebie per customer. If you'd rather part with a buck or two for a superior doughnut, check out The Serious Eats Honor Roll for top picks around the country. If you're not quite up on your doughnut terminology, there's no better time to read up. Nilla Wafer doughnuts, Mormon doughnuts—anything's fair game, today. As long as you keep that sweet tooth in check... and don't do anything you'll regret tomorrow.... More

What Foods Would You Fight For?

Photo from the Washington Post The Washington Post has a great piece from Jane Black (occasional Serious Eats correspondent) about the “Sardinistas”—a group of fishermen and biologists near California’s Monterey Bay, dedicated to elevating America’s perception of the lowly sardine. "We want to value what these fish can give to us from an ecological standpoint and a health standpoint,” sardine fanatic Mark Shelley tells Black. “And we think there are real ways to enjoy them." In service of the sardine, Shelley and others are planning to produce a new line of canned sardines, raise awareness about their health benefits, and re-brand the fish in the American marketplace. It’s an uphill battle, but one that the “Sardinistas” are passionate about.... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

“Real Food” at Starbucks: The coffee giant is making over its menu—no more HFCS, no artificial flavors or dyes, and new food items—by June 30. [Reuters] Lambrusco Returns: It may have a reputation of being bubbly and sweet as cola, but high-quality Lambrusco wines are available in the U.S. [Sun-Times] Hard Times: According to the USDA, more than one in nine Americans are now relying on food stamps to pay the grocery bill. [Reuters] Too Many Chefs Spoiling the Memoir? After Anthony Bourdain wrote the ribald Kitchen Confidential, all sorts of chefs are penning tell-alls of their own. [LAT] Umami in a Bottle: Lynne Rossetto Kasper writes about the “magic flavor” that fish sauce can impart. [Seattle Times]... More

Prank: How to Mix an Exploding Cocktail

Wired has an amusing recipe for a Manhattan-esque cocktail it calls The Manhattan Project. You would be correct in assuming that this is a drink of literally explosive proportions. It involves freezing Mentos into ice cubes and including them in a mixture of Diet Coke, rye whiskey, a splash of vermouth, and a couple dashes of bitters. Whether anyone would nurse that concoction long enough for the ice to melt around the Mentos is a question scientists haven't answered yet. [via Neatorama]... More

Bread Baking, In Pictures

Recipes are great, but a few visuals are even better. Over at SpicySaltySweet, Serious Eats Market Scene contributor Leah Greenstein gives a step-by-step photo tutorial on making fresh pumpernickel bread.... More

Come on in 'The Kitchn'

Each week we round up our favorite posts and recipes from our friends at The Kitchn. This week, the Kitchn shares 123 tips, ideas, and reviews on cheese. If you're lactose-intolerant, you might wanna take a Lactaid before reading this. Also on the Kitchn, inspiration for leftover rice, IKEA animal cookie cutters, a recipe for spinach pizza with white beans and taleggio, and what non-cocktail things to make with Bloody Mary mix.... More

Critic-Turned-Cook Gets Taste of Rush on the Line

Critic Turned Cook follows former Seattle Post-Intelligencer food critic Leslie Kelly on her journey away from the keyboard and into the kitchen as she trains at various Tom Douglas restaurants. Take it away, Leslie! Jordan and Andy are seasoned brat jockeys at Shultzy's in Seattle. I’ve always hated running. Never once experienced that endorphin buzz that pushes exhausted bodies to sprint to a finish. Cooking on the line in a restaurant seems a lot like a race. There’s constant motion fueling the adrenaline charge that comes from multitasking to the max. You’re in the weeds and then you look up and hours have passed like minutes. In my years as a restaurant critic, I was blissfully happy sitting on the... More

In Videos: Butter and Marge, a Tale of Two Spreads

Poor Marge. Always living in the shadows of her fattier, creamier predecessor Butter. This video tells the genesis story of the two. For a long time, Marge wasn't even allowed to be misleadingly yellow—some states went as far as making her pink just so everyone was clear on her butter poseur status. There was a really dark period when bootleg "Marj" was for sale. Since this video was created by the Friends of Butter, a group of natural butter enthusiasts, cryptic music plays during Marge's story, while the mood gets bouncier and happier (upbeat piano music and birds chirping) when we learn about the spreadable joys of butter. The video, after the jump.... More

Chicago: Classin' Up Kung Pao

If I had a slice of bacon for every cute cheffy deconstruction of a classic dish that had gone wrong, I’d be bigger than Niman Ranch. Even if the deconstruction goes right, the gourmet-ing up of mac and cheese or PBJ has been done so much that it’s getting boring. Still, one chef whose deconstructions I never get sick of is Graham Elliot Bowles of Graham Elliot. The cool thing about Bowles is he knows when to deconstruct and when to just leave classics alone. If he wants to use Pop Rocks, he doesn’t have some kitchen intern researching how to re-create Pop Rocks for a week, he just goes to the corner store and buys them. Sometimes you just... More

Elizabeth Karmel's Grilling Tips

"The reason I fell in love with outdoor cooking is that it is the best way to prepare food, bar none. And, you aren't limited by what you can cook or the flavors you use—'If you eat it, you can grill it!' is my motto and I cook and eat by that motto." This week's grilling tips come from a woman who is not afraid of a little smoke, fire, and meat: Elizabeth Karmel. The executive chef at New York barbecue joint Hill Country, Karmel is also the owner of the Grill Friend, a line of grilling products. Additionally, Karmel wrote the popular cookbook Taming the Flame and, most recently, Soaked, Slathered, and Seasoned. "If Taming the Flame was my... More

Seriously Italian: Mint in Italian Cooking

Note: On Thursdays, Babbo pastry chef Gina DePalma checks in with Seriously Italian. After a stint in Rome, she's back in the States, channeling her inner Italian spirit via recipes and intel on delicious Italian eats. Take it away, Gina! Last week, there was some scuttle on my Twitter timeline about fresh mint. It all started when @ruthreichl tweeted something she picked up from my friend Chris Cosentino of Incanto Restaurant in San Francisco; @offalchris told her that mint was the most widely used herb in Italy. How could that be true? The consensus was that surely basil or rosemary must hold that crown. I’m solidly with Chris on this one. Mint is indeed a universal ingredient in Italian cooking,... More

Topless Coffee Shop In Maine Burns Down

Image from the Morning Sentinel Yep, you read that right. The Grandview Topless Coffee Shop opened this February in Vassalboro, Maine—with bare-chested waitstaff refilling the mugs (and, one would hope, the thermostat cranked way up). Owner Donald Crabtree thought the café was a surefire way to rake in business and spice up small-town life. More than 150 applicants (both male and female) interviewed for the ten staff spots. But not all Crabtree’s neighbors were so enthused. Feeling that Grandview brought unwanted visitors and attention to Vassalboro, the town drew up an ordinance to ban topless venues. And two nights ago, flames engulfed the coffee shop, destroying it beyond repair—a fire that officials, the Boston Herald reports, are attributing to arson.... More

Weekend Cook and Tell Round Up: Spring Pasta

It's Wednesday, and that means it is time once again for the Weekend Cook and Tell Round Up. This week's inspiration was simple: Make a pasta using some of the delicious spring vegetables that are in season. As usual, we've gotten some great responses. Here are some of the highlights: Paula Maack made Strozzapreti Pasta with Radicchio, Pancetta and Walnuts. I love radicchio and make a pasta very similar to this all of the time. Dhorst took the classic combination of butter, sage, and Parmigiano Reggiano and added spring peas. Peas and sage? I have to try this. Cassaendra didn't have much luck finding artichokes but made a beautiful Tomato and Mozzarella Pasta Salad that she served alongside salmon filets.... More

Cakedogg vs. Presentcat

In the battle between Cakedogg and Presentcat, everyone's a winner. Because you get lots of cake and presents! Puked forth from dogs and cats! Go to Paul Robertson's Livejournal for the full rainbow-spewing animated gif. (Warning: illustration of dogs and cats is SWF, but rest of artist's livejournal is NSWF.) I don't get it, but I like it anyway.... More

Photo of the Day: Orange & Grapefruit Slices

Photograph from tres.jolie on Flickr This lovely photo of bisected citrus by photograph and blogger Megan Fizell of Feasting on Art makes me wish I had an orange on me right now. Related Photo of the Day: Fruit Paradise Photo of the Day: Winter Tree in Tangerine Skin Photo of the Day: Customized Fruit... More

Snapshots from South Korea: Convenience Stores Galore

Last month I visited Seoul, South Korea, for the first time. Here's a look at something I ate from my one-week trip. For more, check out the rest of my Snapshots from South Korea. If I had planned my trip to Seoul better I would've tried to document as prolific themes in food-related signage as I could—some major ones being chicken and hof restaurants, and anything advertising waffles (a huge trend at the moment). But the only one I planned to capture from the beginning was the many different convenience stores throughout the city. What's fascinating about convenience stores? Probably not much if you grow up around them, but for those of us who haven't (such as my Northern New... More

In Videos: 'Meat Heroes' Toy Commercial Parody

The hyperactivity-and-catchy-theme-song-laced formula for a kid's toy commercial can make those little tykes want anything—even Meat Heroes, the only toy made out of 100 percent Angus beef. Collect them all—Captain Jerry, Danger Mike, Tech Support Bill, Watchdog Eric, and Evil Meat Sorcerer—and you can have seconds (almost a minute, even) of fun before the meat disintegrates in your hands! Watch the video after the jump.... More

Over on 'Nose to Tail Dining': Ask Fergus

Ryan S. Adams, who's been cooking and blogging his way through Fergus Henderson's Nose to Tail Eating on Nose to Tail at Home, has scored quite a coup. Adams has an interview lined up with the man himself. But instead of hogging all the Q&A time with Henderson, Adams is letting his readers come up with half the questions. Head on over and suggest one.... More

Quote of the Morning: 'Why Add Water to Eggs?'

"I could never understand why people add water to their eggs. I generally add 2% milk or higher percentage milkfat, or even sour cream. But the water makes no sense to me. I had watered-down eggs in the Navy and to me they were tasteless. Can anyone explain why this is done, besides 'That's how the French do it'?" —LunaPierCook... More

I Want This: Shin Bob, a Ball of Old Rice

I didn't know what Shin Bob was when I first came across it, but as a rotund blob with nubs-for-arms and abnormally huge eyes, it was love at first sight. And then Emily Koh told me that the Korean words "shin bob" translated to "old rice" (think of the crusty bits at the bottom of a rice cooker) and it all made sense—the brown gradient, the rice paddle sticking out of its head, the accompanying untainted rice grain buddy. Never before would I have thought that a ball of old, crusty rice could be so cute (although I'll note that burnt bread is also quite adorable); it's a fine example of Unexpected Anthropomorphic Food. Alas, I think I'm living... More

Serious Green: Which Foods Travel the Farthest?

foodandwaterwatch.org/food/global-grocer Picture the produce in your crisper right now. Without taking a peek, do you know where those onions were grown? What about that eggplant? And where does that frozen cauliflower get bagged? Unless we're buying from a farmers' market, most of us don't pay much attention to where our food grows--in walking down the supermarket aisles we look for the reddest, crispest bell pepper, without always noting its origin. But minimizing food miles is one of the easiest ways to protect the planet. The shorter the distance your food travels, the less energy was expended in getting it to your shopping cart. Plus, buying local supports the farmers in your own area. Which foods usually travel the farthest?... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Top Chef, the Magazine: Unsurprisingly, it will be a partnership with Food & Wine, whose Gail Simmons appears on the show as a judge. [Media Bistro] Slate's Food Issue: With stories on lard, ratios vs. recipes, and the Federal Writers Project's "America Eats" project. [Slate] The Business of Molecular Gastronomy: The companies behind the gadgets that the geek-chefs use. [Inc.] Saline Trip: Cooking on a solid block of salt sounds tasty—and fun. [mlive.com] Supersubstance: Amid efforts to give foods more antioxidant punch, mysteries as to the compounds' functions remain. [WaPo] Chain Gang: Consumer Reports' Best Chain Restaurant Survey supposedly finds "good eats at any budget." [PR Newswire]... More

Paula Deen's Food Lover's Cruise Set for January 2010

Heeeey y'all!! It's time for midnight buffets at sea with Paula Deen, her husband Michael and two sons, Bobby and Jamie. Yes, you can travel with the whole darn family to the Western Caribbean from January 24 to 31, 2010. According to the Alice Travel website: Life doesn't come with guarantees but holidays should. This winter-busting cruise with Paula Deen is sure to be a Wow of a trip...Celebrity's brand-new Solstice is the perfect ship for this culinary adventure; bright and spacious, fabulous entertainment, and multiple restaurant venues to choose from. To stay alone in the "Sky Suite," it's $6338, but don't worry, everyone gets an individual photo with Paula (you know those priceless ones before everyone boards and is... More

Top 10 Things to Expect When Dining with a Food Blogger

Endless Simmer goes meta with a Top 10 of Top 10 Food Lists. Among the most inspired, Top 10 Things to Expect When Dining with a Food Blogger. Besides cold food (because they have to photograph it before eating it), "You'll notice that the cake for dessert has a slice missing from it. That's because the host needed to photograph the layers."... More

Snapshots from South Korea: Bbopgi, a Sugar and Baking Soda Candy on a Stick

Last month I visited Seoul, South Korea, for the first time. Here's a look at something I ate from my one-week trip. For more, check out the rest of my Snapshots from South Korea. I saw many street vendors selling browned sugar disks-on-sticks during my week in Seoul, but I didn't feel compelled to actually try one until one night in Jongno when, after a failed attempt to get a deep fried french fry-encrusted hot dog, I just wanted to try...something. Preferably something that wouldn't rattle my stomach at midnight (which the hot dog wouldn't have fit into, so it's probably a good thing that I couldn't find it). As the stall with freshly made sugar disks seemed non-threatening, I... More

Sign Promotes Trading Children for Doughnuts

Photograph from gordmckenna on Flickr Breaking with the tradition of signs reading "Warning: Unattended Children Will Be Sold to the Circus" or "Given a Cappuccino and a Free Puppy," we see a sign that implies a profit on the finder of any lost children. Because, while you may get money from selling a child to the circus, money is no match for a few good doughnuts. [via Unique Daily] Note: Serious Eats does not condone black market trades of children for doughnuts. Or any black market trade, for that matter. Related Grammatically Correct Signs at Trader Joe's Photo of the Day: Open Signs Retro Restaurant Signs... More

Serious Cheese: All About Cheese Knives

Photograph from Balakov on Flickr For some reason the American kitchen is a breeding ground for useless gadgets, tools, and knickknacks. Do we really need a separate tool to make balls out of melons? (Actually, melon ballers are quite useful for many different tasks, but that's a subject for another post.) Living in New York City, where most apartments have tiny kitchens with only a handful of cabinets, I am forced to be ruthlessly Spartan with my gadgetry. This is why I am generally opposed to cheese knives. I tend to follow Alton Brown's golden rule: never own a kitchen gadget that has only one use. So what kinds of knives do work well with cheese? My suggestions, after... More

In Videos: Most Jewish Delis Named in One Minute

Many of us set personal records, but for David Sax, it's being able to name more Jewish delis than you in a minute. In this video, he achieves his goal according to The Universal Record Database, listing 30 in total, including classics like Zabar's, Stage, Katz's, Ben's, and Gottlieb's. Maybe there's some scientific evidence that corned beef stunts memory loss? Sax is also the creator of the blog Save The Deli, which inspired his same-named book coming out in October, available now to pre-order. The video, after the jump.... More

Trader Joe's Frozen Avocado Halves = Fail

It's pretty rare that Serious Eaters have a bone to pick with Trader Joe's. The grocery chain practices good grammar, is especially considerate to grandmas, and is sorta like Disney World, only better. But when it starts stocking frozen avocado halves, we may have a problem. According to Mike Hess of True/Slant, the shrink-wrapped halves are no bigger than limes (first mistake). And when turned into guacamole, the outcome is "a pasty, gritty, flavorless and textureless blob of shame." Joe can do many wonderful things, but he should have left this one alone. Stick with the frozen dumplings, man. Related What are your favorite products from Trader Joe's? [Talk] One Dozen Trader Joe's Eggs, Each with a Double Yolk In... More

Michelle Obama: Should Our First Lady Also Be America's Chef de Cuisine?

The New York Times' Amanda Hesser made an interesting, thoughtful, and insidiously provocative suggestion over the weekend; that Michelle Obama, who has already adopted local, healthy food as one of her signature issues (how was dinner at Blue Hill the other night?), should also encourage families to sit down to meals they have actually cooked instead of ordered or reheated. So here's the question: Should our First Lady also be our nation's chef de cuisine? Hesser was actually having an Alice Waters moment (Alice has been advocating this for years), but somehow coming from Hesser, this bit of advocacy sounded downright soothing. There's no doubt that both Hesser and Waters are right: Cooking and eating meals together are good for... More

Served: Night from Hell

I blog by day and wait tables in a New York City restaurant by night. I'm excited to bring you Served, dispatches from the front of the house. Enjoy! The couple had been there for hours, savoring two bottles of wine, some cheeses, white anchovies with pickled fennel, another round of cheese. Then, check please. They wanted me to split the bill on their two cards. Done. “Thank you,” I said, and handed them their credit cards and receipts. The place was rocking, and I was trying not to look like a madwoman as I ran back and forth, wiping tables and taking orders. I noticed the couple was there a few minutes later, still mulling over their receipts. “Is... More

Snapshots from South Korea: Vegetarian Temple Food at Sanchon

Last month I visited Seoul, South Korea, for the first time. Here's a look at something I ate from my one-week trip. It wasn't until I had asked friends for food recommendations in Seoul that I first heard of temple cuisine, traditional vegetarian (or vegan, to be more specific) food served at Buddhist temples. Because I can't just eat fried things and noodles all the time, I was grateful to come across Sanchon ("Mountain Village"), one of the most famous restaurants in Seoul (and worldwide) that specializes in temple-inspired cuisine, while walking around Insadong with Rachel Yang and her mother on my last full day in South Korea. The restaurant was opened in 1981 by Kim Yon Shik, a former... More

Buenos Aires Is a So-So Food City

According to Terrence Henry of The Atlantic Food Channel, Buenos Aires leaves much to be desired in terms of food and flavor. He notes that most restaurants use wood-fired grills, which he thinks blanket all foods with similar flavors. He also comments on the lack of variety in the street food available, saying that it is limited to empanadas. Henry writes: A great food city is a place that caters to all manner of the food-obsessed: vibrant street food, affordable ethnic and traditional dining, and highly acclaimed (and more important, highly respected by their peers) destination restaurants. It should have a connection to its seasons and soil (or sea, as the case may be). It should be a place... More

Leftovers: The Day's Stray Links

Outstanding in the Field: Organization offers food tours of farms, with dinner often served, literally, in the field. [LAT] Celiac Disease: Gluten intolerance becoming more commonplace. [Chronicle] Homemade Ricotta: As simple to make as it is versatile. [Seattle Times] Fast-Food Chain a Symbol of Security: Safest places in strife-plagued southern Philippines seem to be where Jollibee locations open. [AP] The Obamas' Restaurant Choices: "Time and again, they've picked restaurants with the enviro-fashionable ethos of 'sustainable' and 'locally grown,' in keeping with an agenda that includes vegetable gardens and healthy eating." [WaPo] In Need: U.S. food pantries struggling to remain stocked. [AP] The House that Yogurt Built: Slideshow tour of Pinkberry founders' Malibu home. No surprise—it looks like a Pinkberry.... More

New Food Words in 2009 AP Stylebook

For newspaper reporters and editors, the Associated Press Stylebook is ... well ... if not the Bible, then Leviticus at least. It lays out all the rules and regulations that ink-stained wretches are supposed to follow when faced with sticky situations regarding spelling, grammar, and punctuation. While Serious Eats leans closer to the Chicago Manual of Style (go, serial comma!), I cut my teeth on AP and tend to pick up the latest version every couple of years. I'll definitely grab the 2009 edition, which has a few new food words in it, according to the AP Stylebook Twitter account. They include baba ghanoush, chipotle, Key lime, and Parmesan. [via @Atlantic_Food]... More

Daniel Craig Popsicle

In tribute to the coolness that is the James Bond franchise and its current lead, Daniel Craig, Del Monte has introduced a limited-edition ice pop in the actor's shape. The popsicles are available in England for the next week. Related How to Make Homemade Bomb Pops Pickle Sickle, Anyone? Off the Beaten Path: Chilling Out With A Chili Paleta Colgate Uses Toothbrush-Shaped Popsicle Sticks to Remind Consumers to Brush What's Your Favorite Food on a Stick? It's Gotta Be Served at the Minnesota State Fair... More

Last Week's Contest Winners

Cook the Book: Endangered Recipes: oneperfectegg, april1p, velcerick, omnomnom, and tamsinite. Winners were notified by email and appear on our Contest Winners page. Thanks to all who entered.... More

Cevapi, the Best Ground Meat Product in the World

Photograph by Dumneazu "Nobody takes a ground up cow and grills it better than the Bosnians," says food-loving blogger Dumneazu in his post about his trip to Sarajevo. Cevapi from the Bascarsija district is the ground meat dish of devotion, specifically from the restaurant Zeljo. He describes what you'll find if you eat at Zeljo: Like most cevapdzinicas, the menu is spare and no beer is served, but you can order fresh sour buttermilk by the glass to wash down the meat, which is served in a spongey flat pocketed bread known as somun. Traditional sides are chopped fresh onion and kaymak, a thick and slightly cheesy cream ball that melts over the cevap. This is the classic Sarajevo cevap:... More

CandyFab 6000 Turns Sugar into 3-D Objects

Photograph by Windell H. Oskay of evilmadscientist.com Evil Mad Scientist just relaunched their CandyFab project with a new machine: the CandyFab 6000. What can the CandyFab 6000 do for you? It can "print" 3-D objects out of sugar, like that drilled sphere you've always wanted! And while it can technically melt other substances that have a low melting point and come in granular form, sugar is preferable since it smells good, isn't toxic, and doesn't cost much. Evil Mad Scientist plans to sell CandyFab kits and share building plans later this year. To learn more about how this machine works, read about the making of the previous incarnation, the CandyFab 4000. Related Hot Dog Bun Grilling Jig Fractal Snowflake... More

Cook the Book: 'Rustic Fruit Desserts'

There are so many ways to end a meal. Some people like a rich chocolate dessert, others prefer a cheese course, some might need nothing more than an espresso or a digestif, and some of us indulge in all of these. Although I have been known to take the cheese-chocolate-coffee-after-dinner-drink-route, there are times when nothing hits the spot like a fruit-based dessert. A simple pie or cobbler with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream is prefect, especially when the weather is warm and beautiful summer fruits and berries are in season. Peaches, plums, apricots, and berries of all shapes and colors have been begun showing up in the markets—or will appear sooner than you think.... More

In Videos: Sham Wow Parody

The Sham Wow, the shammy-towel-sponge wonder, should watch its back. The paper towel also has many skills. Crumple it up into a ball, throw it into the air, and it will fall down (fall down!). Fold a paper towel up into a vaguely diamond shape, put a string on it, it's a kite. You can even rip them into craploads of squares. Looks like Vince of Sham Wow/Slap Chop has a little protege. The video, after the jump.... More

Forget Iowa, Heaven Is the All Candy Expo in Chicago

It would be difficult to overstate the joy I got from attending the All Candy Expo, the annual meeting/celebration put on in Chicago by the National Confectioners Association. The two-and-a-half-day spectacle gives candy companies a chance to introduce new products and tap into new markets; retailers a chance to discover products they have not sold before; distributors a chance to find new clients; and, most important, everyone a chance to try more different kinds of candy in three days than most people do in their lives. There were so many great things to try at the Candy Expo, and I feel the need to share a lot of it with the Serious Eats community. As a result, this is... More

Mother's Cookies, Now for Sale Again

Mother's Cookies Circus Animals. Photograph from Food Librarian on Flickr We've followed MothersCookiesGate since the news first broke in October that the company had filed for bankruptcy. The day has come—at least if you live in Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Utah, and Washington. The cookies are officially back on shelves in these select areas. Look out for all the favorites, including Circus Animals, Taffy, and Coconut Cocadas. OK, let's be honest, it's all about the Circus Animals. Motherscookies.com even has a little 55¢-off coupon too (for the lucky souls on the West Coast and Texas). Related Mother's Cookies Goes Bankrupt; Hipster Shirt Memorializes the Animal Cookies Kellogg's Saves Mother's Cookies Goodbye Mother's Cookies. No more... More