The Food Lab

Unraveling the mysteries of home cooking through science.

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The Food Lab Redux: How to Make Orange and Sesame Chicken at Home

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 24 comments

If I put in the work to develop a technique I'm happy with, I'm the kind of guy who likes to maximize its utility. Prime example: take all the lessons I learned during months of testing recipes for General Tso's Chicken and apply them to its very similar partners-in-crime on the Chinese-American lunch special menu, orange chicken and sesame chicken. More

The Best Chinese Orange Chicken

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 1 comment

Crispy chunks of deep-fried battered chicken in a sweet, sour, and savory glaze with complex orange flavor. The Chinese take-out classic, made in your own kitchen. More

The Best Chinese Sesame Chicken

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 3 comments

Crispy chunks of deep-fried battered chicken in a sweet, sour, and savory glaze packed with sesame flavor. The Chinese take-out classic, made in your own kitchen. More

The Food Lab: Slow-Smoked, 40-Ounce, Dry-Aged Porterhouse Steaks

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 30 comments

Smoking is generally a method reserved for long-cooking, tough cuts like pork shoulder, ribs, or beef brisket, intended to deeply flavor and tenderize the meat over the course of a half day of cooking. But with a bit of finesse and a couple hours of free time, it's perfectly possible to get that same smoky flavor into a thick-cut steak and still have it come out perfectly medium-rare and juicy, so long as you play your cards right. Here's how it's done. More

The Food Lab: How to Make Foolproof Eggs Benedict

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 26 comments

Combine our recipes for foolproof Hollandaise sauce and foolproof poached eggs—along with a toasted, buttered English muffin and ham crisped in butter—and you've got yourself a plate of eggs Benedict, the unrivaled King of brunch dishes. More

Foolproof Eggs Benedict

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 2 comments

Combine our recipes for foolproof Hollandaise sauce and foolproof poached eggs—along with a toasted, buttered English muffin and ham crisped in butter—and you've got yourself a plate of eggs Benedict, the unrivaled King of brunch dishes. More

The Food Lab Turbo: These Pimento-Jalapeño Cheeseburgers Will Knock You Out

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 8 comments

There's something about the way the caviar of the South (as pimento cheese is affectionately known) melts into a rich, oozy coating, its acidity and punch of pimento flavor accenting a thick and juicy grilled burger in a way that regular cheese just can't. Add some pickled jalapeño peppers in there in place of standard pickles and you've got yourself one hell of a fiery backyard treat. More

Pimento-Jalapeño Cheeseburgers

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 3 comments

There's something about the way the caviar of the South (as pimento cheese is affectionately known) melts into a rich, oozy coating, its acidity and punch of pimento flavor accenting a thick and juicy grilled burger in a way that regular cheese just can't. Add some pickled jalapeño peppers in there in place of standard pickles and you've got yourself one hell of a fiery backyard treat. More

The Food Lab: Essential Techniques and Recipes for the Summer Grill

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 7 comments

In honor of the grilling season I'm missing, I'm going to make it my goal to get as many folks out into their backyards and onto their balconies as many times as possible this summer, because let's be honest: everything tastes better when there's fire, smoke, and cold beers involved, and what better way to gently nudge folks outdoors than with recipes and techniques? I've written a fair amount about grilling in the past, and while this list doesn't encompass quite everything I've done, it does hit the staples of an omnivorous summertime grill with plenty of chicken, steak, sausages, burgers, and—my favorite—corn. More

The Food Lab Turbo: Easy Fingerling Potato Salad with Creamy Dill Dressing

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 4 comments

Dill, potatoes, and sour cream go hand in hand. Just ask any Scandinavian and they'll tell you. That said, most Scandinavian-style potato salads tend to be extraordinarily creamy. This version uses only the barest touch of sour cream, instead relying on good technique to pack the potatoes with plenty of flavor and brightness. More

Easy Fingerling Potato Salad with Creamy Dill Dressing

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 3 comments

The key to the deeply-seasoned potatoes in this tangy and creamy salad is to cook them in water seasoned with salt and vinegar. A dressing flavored with olive oil, sour cream, and dill binds it together. More

The Food Lab Turbo: 3 Grilled Pizzas With Grilled Vegetables

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 4 comments

Grilling pizza is one of the easiest, most delicious ways to get the kind of charred, crisp crust that the greatest pizzas in the world strive for. More importantly, it affords you the opportunity to grill your toppings before applying them to the pie, giving your finished pizzas an extra level of flavor. These three topping combos are cooked 100% outside (no need to pull out a pan indoors before you hit the grill), and none of them use sauce, letting the flavor of the grilled vegetables really shine through. More

Grilled Pizza With Grilled Tomatoes, Asparagus, Goat Cheese, and Marcona Almonds

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 1 comment

I know I'm committing a grave seasonal recipe faux pas here by combining a spring ingredient (we're in the middle of asparagus season!) with a late summer product, but dammit, we've gotten so good at cherry tomatoes that they're sweet and flavorful pretty much all year round. More

Grilled Pizza With Grilled Shiitake, Sopressata, and Parmesan

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt Post a comment

This guy is all savoriness. It starts with shiitake mushrooms charred on the grill. Slices of sopressata get the briefest turn over the fire, then go on top of a pie with fresh mozzarella. On go the mushrooms, along with a fistful of coarsely shaved Parmesan cheese. More

Grilled Pizza With Grilled Broccolini, Chilies, and Garlic

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt Post a comment

Broccolini or broccoli rabe with garlic and chilies is a classic flavor combination. In this recipe, I toss the broccolini in garlic oil before grilling it over hot coals, then apply it in whole pieces to the pie which also gets slices of fresh mozzarella and a scattering of fresh hot chilies. More

The Food Lab Turbo: How to Make The Best Egg Salad

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 74 comments

Perfect is a word that I throw around a lot, and it's always with the understanding that it's a goal that can be strived for but never achieved. This particular recipe for egg salad is about as close to perfect as I've ever had. It's not fancy, there are no special ingredients, but it's well balanced, with bright, fresh flavors and a texture that spans from rich and creamy to crisp and crunchy. More

The Best Egg Salad

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 28 comments

Perfect is a word that I throw around a lot, and it's always with the understanding that it's a goal that can be strived for but never achieved. This particular recipe for egg salad is about as close to perfect as I've ever had. It's not fancy, there are no special ingredients, but it's well balanced, with bright, fresh flavors and a texture that spans from rich and creamy to crisp and crunchy. More

The Food Lab Turbo: Spicy Chorizo and Pinto Bean Chili

Latin Cuisine J. Kenji López-Alt Post a comment

Spicy, vinegary, and flavor-packed, this quick chili recipe relies on raw Mexican-style chorizo (you can make it yourself or buy it from a store), with a few simple flavor additions, a couple of cans of beans, and a quick simmer. More

Spicy Chorizo and Pinto Bean Chili

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 7 comments

Spicy, vinegary, and flavor-packed, this quick chili recipe relies on raw Mexican-style chorizo (you can make it yourself or buy it from a store), with a few simple flavor additions, a couple of cans of beans, and a quick simmer. More

The Food Lab: The Wok Mon Converts Your Home Burner Into a Wok Range. For Real.

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 106 comments

A couple months ago I was approached by Glen Lee, an inventor who claimed to have an ingenious new device for cooking on a wok at home. If it works the way he promised it would, it's going to revolutionize home wok cooking in the same way that the Baking Steel revolutionized home pizza-making. I played around with it a lot, measuring, tinkering, and generally cooking up a storm. I'm happy to report that this thing solves a problem I've been trying to work around for over a decade. More

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