It's common to hear that olive oil shouldn't be subjected to high-heat cooking applications like deep frying and searing because of its low smoke point. But does the science back that idea up? We looked into the existing research and did some taste tests of our own to find out from both a health and flavor perspective.
'FAQ' on Serious Eats
Most people say to cook with a wine you'd be willing to drink, but is that always true? We tested all kinds of wine, from cheap to expensive, light to big—and even flawed—to find out what matters and when.
When a recipe calls for minced garlic, just how much does your mincing method matter? From classic chopping to a garlic press and microplane, we explore the relative merits of each technique. Turns out the choice you make can have a drastic effect on the flavor of your food.
Beef tenderloin is the most expensive cut of meat on the steer. At a good butcher or supermarket, a trimmed center-cut tenderloin can run you as much as $25 to $30 per pound! But there are ways to minimize that cost. The best way is to buy the tenderloin whole and untrimmed, bring it home, and trim it yourself.
A butcher's knot has one big advantage over a regular square knot: it's a slip knot, which means that once you tie it, you can adjust it very easily without needing an extra finger to hold the knot in place as you tighten it.
Tempering chocolate is a technique that requires a good deal of precision, but some methods for doing it are easier than others. Read on to discover how to temper chocolate using both traditional and updated techniques, including with a sous vide circulator or with a food processor and hair dryer for better, more foolproof results.
When I first started taking and answering questions for Thanksgiving a few years ago, I figured at most there'd be a few dozen. We're up to several hundred and counting, and every year we get more and more. This year's batch has focused heavily on sous-vide cooking and vegan/vegetarian options, both subjects close to my heart!
When I first started taking and answering questions for Thanksgiving a few years ago, I figured at most there'd be a few dozen. We're up to several hundred and counting, and every year we get more and more. This year's batch have focused heavily on sous-vide cooking and vegan/vegetarian options, both subjects close to my heart!
There's a mysterious, myth-packed lore when it comes to cast iron pans. On the one hand there's the folks who claim you've got to treat your cast iron cookware like a delicate little flower. On the other, there's the macho types who chime in with their my cast iron is hella non-stick or goddam, does my pan heat evenly! In the world of cast iron, there are unfounded, untested claims left right and center. It's time to put a few of those myths to rest.
Mussels have a reputation as being fiddly to clean or dangerous to eat. How many of you got freaked out about ordering mussels at restaurants after reading Kitchen Confidential? The good news is that it's almost all untrue. Mussels are not only quick to prepare (think: fridge to table in about 15 minutes), they're also inexpensive, readily available, and deliciously elegant too. Here's how to get them ready for any recipe.
A couple of weeks back a friend of mine asked how to poach a large number of eggs for a brunch party. Here's a secret: When poaching eggs, you don't have to cook them to-order. In fact, you can poach them up to five days in advance with no loss in quality. Not only that, but it takes just 2 minutes and zero skill to take those eggs from fridge-cold to ready-to-serve once brunch begins. Here's how it's done.
Cooks are often told that even the tiniest bit of yolk or fat in egg whites will prevent them from whipping properly. Is it true? We put this common piece of kitchen lore to the test.
Spurred by reader demand, we go even deeper into the world of tomato-storage and come back with lots more data. Will our claim that refrigeration can be your best choice for tomato storage hold, or will we have to retract the whole thing? Drumroll please...
I've heard chefs on TV and in books say that combining both oil and butter in a skillet when you sauté lets you heat the butter to a higher temperature without smoking. Is there any truth in this?
Many recipes instruct you to add garlic to the pan only after the onion has already cooked for a few minutes. Why is that? And why can't you just add them both at the same time? We ran some tests to find out.
I've spent my whole life soaking black beans before cooking them just like every other bean around. But Russ Parsons of the L.A. Times recently chastised me for it, claiming that un-soaked black beans are better in almost every way. I put it to the test, comparing soaked and un-soaked beans for flavor, texture, color, ease of preparation, and, er, digestibility. Guess which method came out on top?
People, even experts, swear that you should never put a tomato in the fridge. They are wrong. Here's the follow-up to our tomato-storage tests from earlier in the summer, with some basic tips for how you really should store your tomatoes.
Add a little water to absinthe or pastis and the spirit suddenly goes milky. Why? We dig into the mystery and science.
So you're in the middle of baking cookies and find out that what you thought was cocoa powder is really a jar of peanut butter. Can you swap in a chocolate bar instead? The answer's a tricky one.
There are some baking ingredients you can substitute without a problem, but what about cocoa powder?