The Food Lab

Unraveling the mysteries of home cooking through science.

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The Food Lab: My 11 Favorite Recipes of the Year, 2014

I spend so much time cooking and thinking about what I'm going to cook next that I don't often get to look back at what I've actually done. This has been a pretty big year for me recipe-wise, with some fun breakthroughs, some delicious staples that have made their way into my everyday life, and other recipes that, while they may not be the simplest, are worth every second of the time and effort that go into them. Here are my favorites of they year. They aren't necessarily the most popular, but they were the ones I had the most fun developing and eating. More

The Food Lab: The Secret to Perfect Beef Tenderloin? The Reverse Sear Strikes Again

Whole-roasted beef tenderloin is a once-a-year celebratory dish that can be fantastic if done properly. The problem is, its extra-lean meat lacks flavor, not to mention how easily it dries out and overcooks. Our slow-roasting reverse-sear method ensures perfectly medium-rare meat from edge to center with a nicely browned, flavorful crust. More

Slow-Roasted Beef Tenderloin

Whole-roasted beef tenderloin is a once-a-year celebratory dish that can be fantastic if done properly. The problem is, its extra-lean meat dries out and overcooks very easily. Our slow-roasting reverse-sear method ensures perfectly medium-rare meat from edge to center with a nicely browned, flavorful crust. More

The Food Lab's Definitive Guide to Buying and Cooking Leg of Lamb

It always baffles me when I hear statistics about lamb consumption in the US. Compared to chicken, beef, and pork sales, lamb consumption is a drop in the bucket And why? It's certainly one of the most delicious meats around, with its meaty texture, and intense flavor. Because I love lamb so hard, I'm going to try my best to remedy that situation, starting with the best way to cook a boneless leg of lamb. I'm talking about a method that delivers mild, flavorful meat with a tender texture and a perfectly rosy medium-rare hue all the way from edge to center, surrounded in a crisp layer of browned, crackly fat. Here's everything you need to know. More

The Food Lab's Definitive Guide to Prime Rib

Is there anything more truly beautiful than a perfect prime rib? A deep brown crust crackling with salt and fat, sliced open to reveal a juicy pink center that extends from edge to edge as it gets sliced. It's the ultimate in luxurious holiday roasts, but its high price can make it daunting to cook for even seasoned roasters. Here's the definitive guide to buying, storing, preparing, cooking, carving, and serving absolutely perfect prime rib. More

The Food Lab: Slow Cooked Bolognese Sauce

When it comes to meat sauces, ragú Bolognese is the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world. To arrive at this version, I started with Barbara Lynch's great recipe, adding a few tweaks here and there to enhance meatiness and texture (hello pancetta, gelatin, and fish sauce!), and employing a unique oven-based cooking technique that develops rich browned flavors all while maintaining the tender, silky texture that the best sauces have. This is the kind of sauce that will leave you and your loved ones weak in the knees. More

The Best Slow-Cooked Bolognese Sauce

When it comes to meat sauces, ragù Bolognese is the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world. To arrive at this version, I started with Barbara Lynch's great recipe, adding a few tweaks here and there to enhance meatiness and texture (hello pancetta, gelatin, and fish sauce!), and employing a unique oven-based cooking technique that develops rich browned flavors all while maintaining the tender, silky texture that the best sauces have. This is the kind of sauce that will leave you and your loved ones weak in the knees. More

The Best Creamy Chicken Enchiladas

I grew up eating my mom's layered chicken enchilada casseroles made with canned sauce and tons of sour cream. While I've still got a soft spot in my heart for that dish, this version, with its smoky charred poblano salsa, tender braised chicken thighs, and moderate use of cream and cheese, is its more sophisticated, grown up cousin. More

The Food Lab's Complete Guide to a Stress-Free Thanksgiving

The key to a successful Thanksgiving is planning. Know what needs to get done, when it needs to be done, and how much manpower and time it's going to take you. There's no better way to derail a calm evening by scrambling at the last minute to make sure your turkey is cooked through, or the gravy isn't burning. There are many theories as to when to prep each individual item, but here's my own schedule of events, starting the week before Thanksgiving. More

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