I'm a nursing major & lifelong kitchen addict seeking out ways to make food that's cheap, (sometimes) healthy, and most importantly, DELICIOUS

  • Location: 76sq mi surrounded by reality-Madison, WI
  • Favorite foods: Quinoa, chocolate, shrimp, red wine, dark beer, cilantro, crusty homemade bread, cheddar (a given) etc, etc
  • Last bite on earth: My grandma's chicken noodle soup... more noodles than soup ;)

Guinness Week: Beeramisu

This sounds fabulous, thanks!

Guinness Week: Stout Beef Stew

I am so making this Thursday :D

Sauced: Garlic Chili Oil

This has actually become a traditional Valentine's gift to my SO. He's so happy every time he unwraps it :)

Cooking Bone Marrow

So jealous-wish I could find marrow for sale around here! @climbhighak, Meat Butter is right :P
My SO thinks I'm crazy for liking it; I think it creeps him out that I have no problem eating marrow and then going to my job as an Nursing Assistant on an Oncology unit where I take care of children who've received bone marrow transplants. I've tried to explain the difference, but to no end...

Coffee Traditions: Turkish Coffee

In high school my SO hosted a Turkish foreign exchange student who introduced me to Turkish coffee. It was so strong, but delicious! Afterwards, we'd tip our cute little cups over onto the saucer and "read" (i.e., make up) our fortunes in the grounds :)

Cook the Book: 'Not Your Mother's Casseroles'

bread pudding, hands down!

Valentine's Day Giveaway: Win a Chocolate Truffles Box from Gail Ambrosius

My boyfriend just made me chocolate lava cake for my birthday-mmmm :D

Garlic Powder vs. Fresh Garlic

Personally, I love garlic in all it's shapes and forms. I usually keep at least 3 if not all 4 types around. They all have their advantages, depending on how much time I have or what dish I'm cooking. Free garlic love!

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: Zingerman's Praise the Lard Gift Box

Thick cut bacon over a campfire

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: La Quercia's Coppa Combo

On thinly sliced fresh bread :)

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: La Belle Farms Foie Gras

Roasted, pref w/ a crispy skin

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: La Belle Farms Foie Gras

Any way I can. A plus if it has crispy skin

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: Zingerman's Praise the Lard Gift Box

Thick cut bacon over a campfire

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: Two Peter Luger Steaks

Filet mignon, although judging from the other comments I need to give ribeye more consideration ;)

Cook the Book: 'My Sweet Mexico'

I've since forgotten the name of it, but I had a wonderful, flaky layered pastry from a shop in Mexico city. The shop's permanently etched in my mind-towers and mounds of breads and pastry, all so scrumptious looking, that you wandered about with a tray, feeling blissfully overwhelmed :D

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: La Belle Farms Foie Gras

Roasted with a wonderful crispy skin

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: La Quercia

on good crusty bread

The Physiology of Foie: Why Foie Gras is Not Unethical

Man, if I had a nickel for every case of ad hominem in these comments... I wish that certain people (on both sides, mind you) had found it in themselves to speak about this calmly and rationally; that's how the best debates work! Insulting people or threatening to call the fates down upon them generally isn't too persuasive ;)

That being said, thank you Kenji for the thought-provoking article. I'd never even considered eating foie, but as I accept that eating humanely raised animals can be morally permissible and feel that you have proved that Moulards can similarly be raised in responsible, cruelty-free settings, I'm interested in sampling some from a farm such as La Bella :)

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: Truffle Lovers Pasta

Only once: I this summer I had truffle risotto at an outdoor restaurant in Maui. It was undoubtedly one of the most blissful food experiences of my life.

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: Zingerman's Praise the Lard Gift Box

Thick cut bacon over a campfire :)

Seriously Delicious Holiday Giveaway: Charles Chocolate

Would You Eat a Non-Browning Apple?

Based on other "new & improved!" foods that have been tweaked (by whatever means) to help make them sturdier or more durable, my main concern would be whether or not they managed to make a non-browning apple that doesn't taste like cardboard.

Cocktails and Spirits with Paul Clarke: Flipping Out for Drinks with Whole Eggs

oops, for some reason, the link worked in the comment preview, but seems to have disappeared! Here's the address

Cocktails and Spirits with Paul Clarke: Flipping Out for Drinks with Whole Eggs

Oh my goodness. I just made my first flip thanks to this post. Where has this drink been all my life?

@Katie Potato-farm fresh eggs from someone you trust are great for raw-egg recipes, but you can also find articles like this one that'll help you pasteurize your eggs on your own. I hope that helps!

What are you cooking/baking today?

Alton's "The Chewy" chocolate chip cookies, but made w/ mini chips and formed into tiny cookies-I'm selling them as "Elf Cookies" at my hospital's Holiday bakesale :)

Help for my Sourdough Starter!

So I finally have gotten around to doing dbcurrie's awesome sourdough starter-along tutorial. It was going great at first, but now my little yeasty friends seem to have stalled out-it's day 14, and it still looks like it did on day 6 :(
I've been faithfully adding the requisite ounce each of flour and water and stirring a few times a day. My apartment's staying between 78 and 84 because of this hot spell we're having, so I don't think temp is the issue either. Any ideas? How do I get this little guy ready for harvest?

TJ's Gluten Free Brownie mix: Tasty or no?

Hey eaters,
Next week my enviro club is hosting a bake sale. We just had one in Feb, during which we had several requests for gluten-free items. I'd like a gluten free option to be among the things I bake for this upcoming sale, but I don't have the money to buy all of the specialized ingredients (xanthan gum, rice flour, etc, etc. The gluten-free brownie mix at Trader Joe's has caught my eye as a possible solution to my problem, but I haven't the slightest idea if it's worth buying.
Have any of you tried the mix, and if so, is it any good? Any mix-ins you'd suggest to dress it up?


Hey serious eaters,
This weekend my SO is turning 21. I thought it'd be fun if the cake I baked for him was flavored with alcohol, but I'm having a tough time finding any recipes. I know they must be out there-can anyone point me in the right direction?

Uses for mealy apples?

A week ago, I bought a bag of apples from my local grocer's, and they were delicious-crisp with the perfect balance of sweet and tart.
Yesterday I was shopping and bought the same kind, assuming the store had gotten a fresh shipment of them. Nope, I was wrong. They still taste good, but are waaay to mealy for me to enjoy eating them out of hand. My only idea thus far is to make applesauce, but I have nearly 3lbs of apples and live alone-I'm not sure I can eat that much applesauce by myself!

Long story short, I'm looking for tips/tricks/recipes for what I can do with all these mealy apples. Any ideas, serious eaters?

Help! Health(ier) Dessert Ideas?

My SO's and my 5th anniversary is hurtling towards us, and I'm at a loss for dessert ideas. We usually do dessert at home as our favorite restaurant charges ridiculous prices for dessert. My SO's been trying really hard to improve his eating habits, and I don't want to totally derail him with the sort of super extravagant desserts we've done in the past. I know that healthy desserts aren't usually too scrumptious, but I'd like a dessert that doesn't instantly occlude the arteries. Does anyone have tips/suggestions/recipes that they like?

Sugar-Free Cookies Tips?

The very idea of a sugarless cookie makes me wince a bit, I admit.
The problem is, I wanted to send cookies to my SO's grandparents this year as part of their present, but they're inexplicably hooked on Splenda. I'm not sure why, as neither of them have had problems with diabetes, but they sub it for sugar almost 100% of the time. They're wonderful people, so I know they'll be appreciate any gift, but I think they'd enjoy cookies more if they were sugar free. I've never cooked with sugar substitutes before though, so I have no idea which recipes are good and which would be a waste of time.
Does anyone have any good recipes or tips for sugar-free cookies tucked up their sleeve?

Serious Efforts: Whole Wheat Sourdough Bread?

My SO and I are going on a trip this week, and I wanted to make us some bread for the trip. I was hoping I could combine delicious (mmm, sourdough) with nutritious (ww flour).
I was hoping to swap at least 1/2 if not more of the AP flour for "white" whole wheat flour (made from white spring wheat instead of red wheat). I made the starter and it seems to be doing fine, but I've never made sourdough before, so I'm a bit apprehensive about whether or not this'll work... Thoughts? Hints? Tips? Warnings?

A Poem That's Got Me Pining for Tomatoes...

I'm taking a Spanish Lit class right now, and we touched on the poems of Pablo Neruda (one of my favorites :D ) We discussed his poem "Oda al Tomate," and it's got longing for August (or the southern hemisphere-whichever). Since it's a foodie poem, who better, I thought, to share it with? I didn't have enough space for both the spanish and the english versions, so I'm going for the wider audience and posting the translation. If you want the real deal, you can find it here

Ode to the Tomato

The street
filled with tomatoes
light is
its juice
through the streets.
In December,
the tomato
the kitchen,
it enters at lunchtime,
its ease
on countertops,
among glasses,
butter dishes,
blue saltcellars.
It sheds
its own light,
benign majesty.
Unfortunately, we must
assassinate it:
the knife
into living flesh,
a cool
populates the salads
of Chile,
happily, it is wed
to the clear onion,
and to celebrate the union
child of the olive,
onto its halved hemispheres,
its fragrance,
salt, its magnetism;
it is the wedding
of the day,
its flag,
bubble vigorously,
the aroma
of the roast
at the door,
it's time!
and, on
the table, at the midpoint
of summer,
the tomato,
star of earth,
and fertile
its convolutions,
its canals,
its remarkable amplitude
and abundance,
no pit,
no husk,
no leaves or thorns,
the tomato offers
its gift
of fiery color
and the totality of its freshness.

Anyone else dreaming of salads, salsas and BLTs?

Inoffensive Powdered Milk?

I'd like to be able to give my boyfriend's parents homemade marshmallows and hot chocolate mix as part of their Christmas present. However, I tried Alton's mix recipe last year, and despite the raves I've heard from others that have made it, it was an assault on the tastebuds. The powdered milk had this awful taste, like the smell of spoiled milk, that overpowered everything else.
I'm assuming that since tons of other people have made this & liked it, the kind of powdered milk I used was to blame. Does anyone know what brand I could buy that would actually make tasty hot chocolate?

Busty Yogurt Biscuits

[Photograph: Donna Currie] The first recipe I tried from Southern Biscuits by Nathalie Dupree and Cynthia Graubart was the Busty Yogurt Biscuits. They are similar to cream biscuits in that they don't use butter but are still flakey, rise high,... More

Grilling: Smashed Potatoes

When cooking a main dish over indirect heat, I'm often left in a quandary over what to do for a side. With half the grill taken and the lid needing to stay closed, I find myself left with two options—make a side off the grill or find something that can be grilled in the few minutes after the main is done and before it gets cold. The later scenario isn't always an easy one to tackle, leaving quick-grilling foods like asparagus and summer squash over used, but I've found with these smashed potatoes, a combo cooking off and on the grill can be a great way to go. More

Homemade Bagels, à la Jo Goldenberg

[Photographs: Adam Kuban] This is my go-to recipe for homemade bagels. It's adapted from Bernard Clayton's Complete Book of Breads. Clayton, in turn, got the recipe from the folks at the now-defunct Jo Goldenberg's, the famous Jewish restaurant and delicatessen... More

Dinner Tonight: Pasta e Broccoli

What really works with the famous pasta e broccoli is that if you cook it long enough, the parboiled broccoli breaks up into the pasta and almost melts into a pasta-clinging sauce when combined with the cooking water. Increasing the ratio of broccoli-to-pasta not only makes the dish a bit healthier, but better too. While this version is a simple one with garlic, pepper flakes, and Parmesan, another route might melt some anchovies into the oil and skip the Parmesan. Either way, this is, at the very least, a delicious way to eat your broccoli. More

Raspberry Liqueur Chocolates

These easy homemade candies are reminiscent of fancy dipped chocolates. They may not look as pretty, but they are filled with the fresh, pure flavor of dark chocolate and sweet, boozy raspberries. Gussied up in paper liners and arranged in... More

Eat for Eight Bucks: Maple-Mustard Baked Chicken Thighs with Potato Wedges

One of my favorite meals these days is a whole chicken roasted on top of potatoes. The chicken is flavorful with garlic, olive oil, and herbs. The potatoes are perhaps even better: they get seasoned with the chicken's juices, plus more olive oil and more herbs. But easy as it may be, roasting a whole chicken isn't that cheap, and it takes a while. So I've been experimenting with roasting chicken thighs and legs, and adding flavor even during a shorter cooking time. More

Homemade Pizza Rolls

I love a challenge. When I was urged to create a recipe for homemade pizza rolls for a Super Bowl snack, I knew it'd be an interesting project. They come with the same warning: this filling is molten hot. More

Sunday Brunch: Tourtière

Tourtière is traditionally served around the holidays, but this hearty pie makes an appearance a few times every winter at my house. The meat inside varies from cook to cook and can be a combination of pork, beef and veal. And any good tourtière will be highly seasoned with spices like nutmeg, allspice, black pepper, cloves, and cinnamon—if not necessarily all at once. More

Dinner Tonight: Vinegar-Glossed Chicken

Not all vinegar is made the same, and when you cook with good vinegar, its hard tones tend to disappear and it becomes pungently sweet and balanced. Such is the case with this staple. The vinegar adds glorious depth and acidity to what would otherwise be a ho-hum sauteed chicken dinner. More

Irish Coffee Caramel Ice Cream with Shaved Dark Chocolate and Candied Pecans

It has buttery, smoky caramel, a dash of coffee grinds, and a generous helping of whisky for good measure. It's a bracing combination, but oh does it work. First you taste the coffee, roasted and rich, with the pleasant bitterness of an actual cup of joe. Then comes the caramel to sweeten things up just a tad, melting to sweet buttery goodness. Then the whisky: the more ice cream you eat, the more you taste it. More

Holiday Leftovers: Ham, Bean, and Kale Stew

So if you've been following along here, you already know everything you need to know to serve a perfect holiday ham. But what about the next day when you've got that big ol' ham bone and scraps to contend with? I've been obsessed with the combination of beans, pork, olive oil, and sherry vinegar. Both the oil and vinegar drizzled on right before serving enliven the stew significantly. More

Sourdough Starter-Along: Day 1 - A Half-Ounce Flour and an Ounce of Water

My goal with this project was to come up with a method for getting a sourdough starter going that would be easy for anyone. I also didn't want to end up with an excess of starter that would have to be thrown away. So I started with a very small amount. I find that starters seem to work better if they're very wet at the beginning, so I started with 1/2 ounce of flour and 1 ounce of water. That's all. More

Cook the Book: Sweet Potato Pralines

I suppose I was playing it safe when I chose these Sweet Potato Pralines since the recipe only includes a scant two tablespoons of sweet potato. The finished candy didn't end up tasting all that sweet potato-y at all, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Regardless of the lack sweet potato flavor, the pralines were pretty spot on—sugary sweet with a great crunch and tons of nutty pecan nibs. More