I made shrub, the slow way, with a cup of strawberries, a cup of sugar, a cup of water, and a cup of vinegar, as (I think, if I understood the recipe) directed here for cold-process shrub. Turned out great. But now, I find what looks like a mother of vinegar floating around in the bottom. Has anyone else experienced this? Is it a problem? A blessing? Should I remove it, or just leave it to its ghostly little routine?
I just bumped into a new (to me) ingredient: passata. I gather that it is some sort of tomato-base sauce, but my brief internet search brought up such a wide variety of things that I can't say I know what it is. I'm sure many, if not most (all?) of you are familiar with it, so please enlighten me (and let me know what to avoid if that's relevant). Thanks.
I have an unexpected bumper crop of parsley that must be harvested within a day or two (I need the space for something else). What can I do with it? I'm willing to make something freezable if that's what it takes, but I'd like to use up a lot of it while it's fresh. Thank you.
My digital kitchen timer seemed like such a good idea, but now I hate it. It requires me to punch in the minutes and seconds I want to measure, and then to punch it again to get it to count down. The first part works fine, but so often I forget to do the second bit and I wonder why I haven't heard the timer go off just about the time I smell smoke. I have reverted to my wind-up one that measures only minutes but dings when I want it to without me having to tell it that that is what it is FOR (take that, digital timer), but I sometimes miss the single ding (if it happens when the doorbell rings, for instance). Does anyone have a timer that is truly lovable?
I have lost my rice mojo - I used to be able to buy just about any old rice, cook it 2:1 water-to-rice by bringing the water to a boil, stirring in the rice, covering it, and letting it simmer on lowest heat for 20 minutes. Now, my rice comes out icky - fuzzy at the ends and sometimes with a crunchy center, while still sort of wettish at the bottom of the pot. For a while, I had luck with Trader Joe's white basmati, following the directions to wash it first and use less than twice the water. That stopped working. Then I tried my regular way, and that didn't really work either. Besides getting a rice cooker, can someone guide me?
I would like to be able to cook long grain rice so that the grains are separate and don't bloom at the ends (that is, split), and have the rice be tender throughout and no water left at the end of the cooking period. I just had some wonderful rice in a South American-style restaurant dish that reminded me of my painful inability in this area. Help, please!
I'm actually feeding 16, but three are vegetarians. How much prime rib should I buy to feed the rest (one child)? Do I need more than one roast? I'm cooking it in the oven.
A friend who is celebrating TG with us has a gluten problem, but I'd like her to have some gravy to put on her turkey (I will not compromise my bread dressing). I will be making the gravy from scratch, so I'd like to make some gluten free for her. Any decent recipes?
Also, another friend is bringing chestnut soup; I don't know her recipe, but it would be nice to see if it could be gluten free as well. Any ideas from anyone who has experience here?
When I scroll down on your main page (using the scroll bar), I very often get an annoying little splat of (probably) music that vanishes as quickly as it came. What is it, and how can I not experience it (I'd prefer not to have to shut off my sound just for this web site)?
Having recently stumbled on an Assyrian myth regarding the gods drinking sesame wine the night before creating the world (and doesn't that explain a lot?), I am unable to stop thinking about what sesame wine would be like. Does anyone know? Has anyone out there ever had it or heard of it? Google didn't help me much, but perhaps I didn't ask correctly.
I found a recipe (Moroccan) that I would like to try, and it calls for a size 10 or 12 chicken. Does anybody know what that means?
I am confounded again by curry paste that somehow creeps up the side of the jar, slides through the seal created by the screwed-on lid, and slithers down the side of the jar to form a bright-orange ring of oil at the outside bottom of the jar.
My soy sauce does the same sort of thing; it slides up the inside of the bottle, through the plastic shaker, through the screwed-on lid, and down the outside of the container.
I have never been a kitchen neatnik, but I do make some effort, and these two ingredients seem bound and determined to undermine me. I do not think I am being paranoid about this. What gives?
Okay, the time is approaching when I will once again probably try and fail to toast pumpkin seeds and achieve something edible. I can't list how many recipes I've tried, and somehow they all turn out dreadfully tough and woody. Is it really possible to make good roasted/toasted pumpkin or squash seeds at home? If so, how? Or is this just something that people say they eat and like, but nobody really does?
I find that I am increasingly confused when I find a recipe that specifies something like "marinate 4 - 6 hours or overnight." The only way that I can marinate something overnight is if I put it in the marinade the evening before cooking it (at the latest, at bedtime). Then, unless I am choosing to have my main meal for breakfast, it will continue to marinate until late afternoon the next day, when I prepare dinner: total marination time, approximately 18-20 hours. That's a far cry from the minimum 4-6 hours alternatively specified.
Has anyone encountered a more realistic convention, perhaps recommending that things be put into the marinade in the morning for late afternoon prep? I would like to suggest this to recipe writers, if there is no objection.
I know that this is not of earth-shattering importance, but it concerns me when the marinade I am using is strong, and might overwhelm the flavor of the marinadee (?) if left too long. For most things, the amount of time spent marinating above the minimum might not make much difference, but when I'm using a strong soy sauce or a lot of pepper, I can't help but wish for more specific guidelines.
Golden Gate Park is flanked by two of San Francisco's best eating neighborhoods—the Sunset and the Richmond. But the last thing you want is to find yourself wandering too far afield; say, accidentally hiking 40 minutes through freezing cold fog in pursuit of Korean fried chicken (been there, done that). Here's our guide to the best spots to eat that are within two blocks of Golden Gate Park.
Inspired by the classic British recipe, these mini Yorkshire puddings are seasoned with dill and garlic and cooked in a muffin tin. Topped with smoked salmon and a fiery horseradish cream, they make for a fast, easy, and original brunch.
The Obituary is an intriguing spin on a gin martini, probably getting its morbid name from the inclusion of absinthe (though a pastis like Pernod can be substituted). The result is a completely new drink; the introduction of an anise-y flavor highlights the aromatics already present in both gin and vermouth.
These corn muffins have a crunchy top, and tart cranberries add bursts of zingy flavor. Perfect for freezing and re-toasting later.
My favorite way to cook potatoes: boiled, smashed, then shallow-fried until golden brown and crisp. They get unbelievably crispy with a great creamy center.
When it's crunch time and dinner's finishing in the oven, hors d'oeuvres strategically give guests a diversion while enabling the host to come across as gracious rather than frazzled. From bourbon-glazed pecans to three-cheese artichoke dip, here are 22 snacks to whet your Thanksgiving-sized appetite.
Francine Segan calls the avocado sauce in this dish from her new cookbook, Pasta Modern, a healthy alternative to dairy-based cream sauces, but it hardly tastes like bland diet food. The buttery fruit gets a quick buzz in a blender with plenty of lemon juice, turning velvety thick. It melts into the hot, white wine-scented pasta, adding a flavorful coating to the red onion, and shrimp. A dusting of lemon zest enlivens the dish, making the spaghetti impossible to put down.
When we talked to Cook's Illustrated publisher Chris Kimball about the November 2007 issue of the magazine, we asked what recipes really stood out in it this year. This pie crust is one of them, he said. "It's a brilliant...
Cooking with Flowers blends vibrant nasturtiums with soft, creamy goat cheese for an ice cream that's by turns grassy, peppery, and sweet.
Named after the two little peepholes that resemble reading glasses, La Boulange: Cafe Cooking at Home presents these lunettes, with two kinds of jam sandwiched between buttery cookie squares.
Roasted wild mushrooms, parmesan, and truffle oil all get whisked into eggs and baked into puffed, fluffy individual omelettes in muffin tins.
As tough as chicken breasts can be to cook—there's no fat or bone to help mitigate dryness—a pounded chicken "paillard" is as easy. It's a technique that becomes a no-brainer once you learn it, whenever sauteeing the old boneless, skinless standby. By pounding the breast into uniform thickness and watching carefully, you can turn out a surprisingly moist cutlet with plenty of caramelized surface area. Add a delicious pan sauce—this time, by one Thomas Keller—and it's a solid dinner, indeed.
This recipe from the New York Times Sunday magazine argues for thinking of herbs not just as a garnish, but as the center of a great dish. We've all had pesto, but that's just one way to do it. An absolutely epic amount of chopped herbs (three cups by the end) are mixed into juicy meatballs and pureed with garlic and olive oil into a simple sauce. It's rich and meaty, fragrant from the herbs, and honestly one of the better recipes I've cooked in months.
Beginning in the late 1800s and continuing up until Prohibition, bar owners and commercial producers began to tinker with the basic recipe of cherries in maraschino. Other boozes were substituted; easier-to-find (and cheaper) cherries were swapped in. The process of eliminating the liqueur from the recipe began well before Prohibition, probably as a cost-saving measure, but once the Great Experiment started, the use of liqueur was doomed, and the DayGlo orbs took over. But cocktail cherries are easy to make at home, and you might find that it's fun to tinker with the recipe, adjusting it to your tastes and needs.
So I have a typical pregnancy problem: I have an unquenchable craving for smoked salmon, but smoked salmon is dangerous for pregnant people unless we cook it right before eating. The only way I've ever eaten smoked salmon is with...
These skewers come via Jean-Georges Vongerichten, and as you'd expect with his recipes, the flavors are complex but expertly blended. The bright sweetness of lemongrass leads, followed by all kinds of complex pungency from the fish and oyster sauces, rounded out with a little sugar, shallot, and toasted sesame seeds.
By separating the corn kernels from the ear (check out our Knife Skills video for more on that) and cooking them over crazy high heat in a skillet with a bit of oil, the kernels get deeply charred while still retaining a sweet bite. It's my go-to method to cook corn indoors because it allows you to capture some of that smoky, complex, sweet flavor of grilled corn.
Carnitas. The undisputed king of the taco cart. The Mexican answer to American pulled pork, at their best they should be moist, juicy, and ultra-porky with the rich, tender texture of a French confit, and riddled with plenty of well-browned crisp edges. Our version is easier than the traditional bucket-of-lard method, and produces results that are juicier and more flavorful.
Prime-grade? Grain finished? Marbled? "What do all these terms mean?" you cry. And more importantly, "Why should I care?" Everything you've ever wanted to know about prime rib, right here. Here are the answers to every question you've ever had or might ever have about prime rib.
Meltaways were one of the first cookies I made when I began my professional baking career. They're incredibly easy and their delicate, crumbly texture makes them terribly addictive. In this version, I made them with lime zest. But if you'd prefer another flavor—like lemon, vanilla bean or even black pepper—go for it.
[Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger] These pancakes were supposed to be small little guys, about the size of CDs (that's stands for a compact disc, for you young folk). They'd be perfect as banchan, those tiny appetizers set out for a full...
[Photograph: Blake Royer] Sometimes at fancy restaurants the waiter will begin the meal with a flourish, quietly intoning words to the effect of "compliments of the chef," making you feel as if you're a special guest of the restaurant. The...
I want to get some ideas to make some gifts for Christmas. Liqueurs or cordials. I have a Kahlua that I make that turns out great. Any others would be fun to try. thanks...
Editor's note: Philadelphia food writers Joy Manning and Tara Mataraza Desmond drop by each week with Meat Lite, which celebrates meat in moderation. Meat Lite was inspired by their book, Almost Meatless. Photograph: Tara Mataraza Desmond I love this kind...
Limoncello is a southern Italian lemon liqueur that is made primarily in Sicily and Sardinia and traditionally served at the end of the meal as a digestivo. Limoncello works equally well before the meal as an apertivo, which is how we're presenting it this week as part of the menu for a full Italian meal.