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Double_J

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New England's Greatest Contribution to the Hot Dog

I agree that NYC in general doesn't rate on the best hot dog scale. IMO

1.) Chicago
2.) Denmark

Haven't tried New England dogs so I can't opine but I have a feeling that they're probably one of those things you have to grow up with to appreciate.

The Best Spirits to Give Your Dad This Father's Day

Snow leopard vodka. 65% of the time it works every time...

How to Make a Parchment Paper Lid for Stews and Braises

Facepalm...

So obvious and yet I've been doing this for a long time by only folding the sheet in half. Needless to say, my covers were pretty sad...deformed and uneven like a snowman on the first warm day after a snowstorm.

Vegan Meal Plan: A Week of Delicious Breakfasts, Lunches, and Dinners

Thank you, thank you, thank you! This is awesome! I think I'm going to try out the various menus next week.

That said, the tofu scramble recipe has been killing me since you first published it. It looks amazing. I don't think I'll be able to wait to Wednesday for it and will have to give it a go this weekend.

The Food Lab: Great Hummus and the Science of Smooth

Probably not the right place, but congratulations to Kenji on the James Beard nomination for The Food Lab.

Honestly, with all of the buzz the book has gotten thus far I would have been surprised had it not been nominated!

What to Eat With Chicken? Depends How You're Cooking It

My very guiltiest pleasure...roasted chicken goes best with Stove Top 'stuffing'.

Also, you can keep your stinkin' biscuits! Fried chicken demands macaroni and cheese and southern style greens.

The Vegan Experience: Welcome to Year 5

It may sound like I'm being terribly lazy but how about putting together an illustrative one week meal vegan plan for those of us who know nothing about how to switch over in a healthy way?

I love the notion of creating rich and flavorful vegan dishes but also know that I'm the type that will jump on pasta as the easy out and will likely not do a great job of making sure I'm getting adequate proteins, etc.

How I Fell for Amaro Montenegro

I used to date a girl named Allie until 2008 when she left me for some schlub she met while studying abroad in Italy...

I'm sure it's a different girl though.

The Food Lab: How to Make the Best Oven-Cooked Pulled Pork

Agreed that pulled pork generally doesn't hold more than a couple of days. I'll generally use leftovers to make an improvised Chinese bao filling by stir frying with onion, garlic and a little rice wine, hitting it with a good dose of hoisin, and finishing with chopped scallions. Delicious with homemade or store bought steamed buns. Hoisin has such a powerful flavor that it doesn't really matter if the pork is already mixed with a sauce or not. Vinegar or sweet sauce doesn't matter either, as they're both flavors that work in this context.

Best Eaten Alone Without Pants On: Pineapple and Bacon Nachos

You may want to keep your pants on while preparing this meal due to the potential for splattering bacon grease, errant melted cheese, and inadvertent contact with hot oven bits. Feel free to remove your pants prior to consumption.

Also, nachos for one? nachos eaten without pants? What is the SE team trying to imply about those of us who love nachos?

Better Creamy Shrimp Dip Starts With Perfectly Plump Shrimp

Looks good. I think I'll add this to the Super Bowl menu.

Any recommendations for cooking the shrimp in a water bath? 130F or so for 20 minutes-ish?

Get in on the Korean Snack Food Craze With Honey-Butter Potato Chips

Oof. Greasy potato chips drenched in butter. I don't even want to know what this feels like on the way down/out.

Still, it will likely make an appearance on my super bowl table.

22 Supermarket Items You Should Leave on the Shelf (and What to Get Instead)

@MrsSell - you might just need to find a new supermarket. Split chicken breasts (bone-in and skin on) are by no means uncommon. All of the supermarkets by me carry them.

Check to see if they might be kept on the lower shelves with the whole chickens and bulk packs. They're not usually kept with the boneless/skinless stuff.

The Comfort Food Diaries: A Trick of the Tongue

I absolutely love tongue but admit that the texture can be a little disconcerting once you know what it is.

Once people know they're eating tongue, it's very hard not to notice that the texture...is exactly like a tongue.

This is why I think that people find lengue tacos or sandwiches more acceptable than most other preparations despite the fact that tongue is absolutely glorious in a stew-like braise. The small pieces and tortilla/bread help to provide some contrast to the texture of the meat.

How to Get Started With Sous Vide Cooking

@pamelalund: freezer to plate is a huge benefit of sous vide. I'll load up on meat, etc. from the warehouse store and vacuum seal in individual servings for this purpose. An added benefit is that having everything in bags makes freezer organization really easy (just make sure to label your meats so you remember what is what!).

Also, don't forget about the fact that a water bath is one of the best ways to reheat or hold food.

Meats can be reheated straight from the fridge to a perfect 130. They'll be as juicy and moist as they were when first cooked and there's no risk of overcooking or drying out. Leftover prime rib reheated in it's own jus is my favorite way to do a french dip.

Things like mashed potatoes, creamed spinach, stove-top mac and cheese, etc. can all be made hours ahead of time, plopped into a bag, and held in a water bath. Transfer to a bowl for service and they'll be as good as freshly made. No drying out or risk of burning and you'll get to reclaim your stove space. Really helpful if you do big menus for holidays, etc.

How to Get Started With Sous Vide Cooking

@szymanskiea - I generally stick with zip top bags for cooking in water. They're totally fine at sous vide temps. The only headache is that you may lose seal integrity at higher temperatures since more steam will be created in the bag and it will blow up a bit.

Not only do you save yourself the hassle of pulling out a specialized vacuum sealer and bag setup, but zip top bags are also recyclable in the same bins that are used for plastic shopping bags.

I can't really speak to energy usage but I can't imagine it's much worse than any other cooking appliance. We're not talking industrial sized pumps or heating elements or anything like that.

How to Get Started With Sous Vide Cooking

I love my sous vide setup, even if I don't think to use it as much as I probably should.

Truthfully, eggs have been the only disappointment for me thus far. Between the fact that you still have to carefully watch the timing and that you still have to clean up the whites to get a picture perfect poached egg, it's almost just as easy to poach eggs the traditional way.

Sous-vide does allow for some pretty cool non-traditional egg applications though (for example, I've rolled barely set egg yolks into sheets and used them as burger toppings).

The Comfort Food Diaries: The Mindless Pleasures of the PB&J

Ugh - chips are only for savory sandwiches. PB&J only needs a cold glass of milk on the side. Hence the reason that eating more than one sandwich per sitting is acceptable - you have to make up for those missed calories somehow!

Step-by-Step: Crackly, Fudgy Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Made these over the weekend - super easy and they come out just as pretty as the pictures. I think I slightly over cooked mine as they weren't quite as fudgy in the middle as I hoped they would be but they were still delicious.

The only downside is that they lose a bit of their charm if not eaten the day they're baked. The exterior loses a bit of crispness and the inside dries out a bit so the contrast between exterior and interior is less pronounced.

Dinner in 20: Make Foolproof Pasta Carbonara Without Scrambling (Eggs)

I love love love love pasta carbonara. It's my desert island dish. Too bad my cholesterol probably can't concur.

The Food Lab: Here's What I'm Eating on Thanksgiving

Standard menu - we're scaling back and keeping it simple this year. I figure my prep shouldn't be more than 4 hours spread across two days.

Lumpia (filipino egg rolls, my mom's claim to fame and always heavily requested regardless of any other menu items)

Cheese/sausage/olive plate

Salad (probably feta and some kind of nuts/dried fruit, not sure yet)

Spatchcocked red bourbon turkey from our local poultry farm

Sage and sausage stuffing

Mashed potatoes

Green bean casserole

Cranberry chutney

Giblet gravy

Cranberry and black pepper shrub cocktails

Pies, pies, and a pumpkin roll (I do the savory dishes, the rest of the guests do dessert)


Hey Chef, What Can I Do With Carrots?

Carrots are also great in compost and as projectile weapons. Forced consumption of carrots is a classic form of punishment for kids from 3 to 33.

I do not like carrots, Sam I Am.

Easy, Ultimate Clams Casino

These are delicious - easiest the best version of clams casino I've had. That said, it is quite a tedious recipe as each step requires quite a bit of hands-on attention. These aren't something you necessarily want to make if you'll be cooking multiple items at the same time. That said, the end product is so rich that 4-6 per person is fine for an appetizer so don't think you need to make too many. Serve them with plenty of lemon.

On the breadcrumbs, don't worry about dicing the bacon too fine. I left my bacon relatively large but then put the finished toasted breadcrumbs into a food processor to get everything to a uniform size before using. It worked great. I'll be using these breadcrumbs on a number of items from this point forward (mac and cheese are up first).

The leftover butter did indeed go very well with pasta as did the extra breadcrumbs. I added some parmesan for sharpness and capers for acidity and I think the crowd actually liked the pasta better than the clams!


How to Season and Maintain a Wooden Cutting Board

@ wordsfailme - I know the post is a little stale but give your board a good sanding. It's like hitting the reset button on a chopping board. You'll need to reseason as if from scratch though.

How to Season and Maintain a Wooden Cutting Board

RE: garlic smells (and onion, to a much lesser extent). There's not much you can do once the smell is embedded in the board.

Depending how heavy it is, you can try saturating the board in lemon juice, sprinkling it with baking soda, and letting it sit overnight to see how well that works. When done, scrape the soda off with a bench scraper and give the board a normal cleaning as you would after any other use. This will work pretty well with lighter smells but won't completely eliminate a heavy contamination.

Outside of that, sanding is really your only other option and you'll usually need to go pretty deep to get below the stink. I now only use plastic for garlic as I ruined a pretty expensive Boos board with garlic and couldn't get the stink out no matter how much I sanded (I even had a belt sander).

Also, raw meats aren't generally that big a deal if your board is well seasoned. That said, I usually make it a practice to wipe down my board with a white vinegar solution after using it for meats just to stay on the safe side.

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