• Location: ag3208
  • Last bite on earth: Probably some kind of sushi, oddly enough my mother keeps telling I'm going to die young if I keep eating raw fish. Hmmm...

This Week at Serious Eats World Headquarters

I love that green ice cream cone serving dish!

How to Make the Best Baked Jalapeño Poppers

Great idea! Can't wait to try it. Can I make a big batch and freeze these? Maybe before the baking stage?

Crispy and Gooey Baked Jalapeño Poppers

Great idea! Can't wait to try it. Can I make a big batch and freeze these? Maybe before the baking stage?

In Praise of a Turkey-Free Thanksgiving

I'm all for Spaghetti Carbonara Day!

How to Eat Flushing: A One-Day Food Tour of NYC's Greatest Chinatown

Thanks for this great post Max! This + a night session at the US Open sounds like a perfect day for me.

How to Make Rich and Creamy Fettuccine Alfredo That Won't Weigh You Down

This would go great with some pepperoni pizza knots in a cast iron pan.

Manner Matters: How to Curb an Over-Orderer

My mother will purposely over order for herself so she'll have leftovers for another meal. If there's an 8 ounce steak and a 14 ounce steak, she'll order the 14 ouncer. I gently told her this is fine if she or my dad is paying, but when someone else pays it looks bad.

11 1/2 Things You Can Do With a Wooden Spoon (Besides Stirring)

I use a wooden spoon handle to make "thumbprints" in Thumbprint cookies that will later be filled with jam or chocolate.

Some friends told me their grandmothers use wooden spoons for hitting people, but I won't go there.

Novelty Ice Cream Week: How to Beat Mister Softee at His Own Soft-Serve Game

I can't help but see the opportunity to make a "Salty Pimp" a la Big Gay Ice Cream

Robyn Lee Is Leaving Serious Eats a Mere 7 1/2 Years After She Got Here

I actually discovered Serious Eats through Robyn!

Best wishes and I hope this isn't the last we'll hear from you!!

The Easiest Way to Store Grains is a Cheap Plastic Pitcher

Cheap plastic pitchers. It's a good thing.

This Week at Serious Eats World Headquarters

I'm going to miss pictures of Robyn dancing.

Good luck on your move Kenji!

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

Goodbye security deposit, hello Wok Hei!

Buttery, Flaky Frangipane Puff Pastry Waffles

Curse my square waffle iron! Oh who am I kidding I'm still making this.

Ask the Critic: How Do You Know What to Order for a Review?

Hi Carey,

Do you prefer to visit a restaurant when it first opens or do you prefer to go after it's been open for awhile and found it's legs?

Two Pounds of Ground Beef- What to make?

@Breezycooking I didn't realize the story wasn't on the website! In "Cooking For Mr Latte" Amanda Hesser tells a story about when she was a kid her dad was really sick and before he died her aunt came over to take care of her and her siblings. They didn't have a lot of money so the aunt shaped the meat loaf into a lobster shape to amuse the kids, hence the name "Mock Lobster". She described the meatloaf as being really buttery and rich which is why I want to try making it.

Two Pounds of Ground Beef- What to make?

I've always wanted to try making Amanda Hesser's "Mock Lobster"

Star Wars themed recipes?

On Thursday night The Big Bang Theory celebrated Star Wars Day and Raj opened "Admiral Ackbar's Snack Bar" that had:
- R2-Decaf
- Cafe Au Leia
- Chai Tea-3PO
- Attack of the Scones

New Pastries From Dominique Ansel's Spring Line Up

I was on a streetcar in Toronto and the guy in front of me was having a long discussion about Dominique Ansel and cronuts, followed by cookie milk shots, then wafflegatos. He then went on a rant about Montreal bagels. He may have been wearing a tweed jacket, a bow tie and tortoiseshell glasses. It made me question my life and how other people might see me.

What are NYC's Most Overrated Restaurants?

Magnolia Bakery! The banana pudding is good, but the cakes and cupcakes are atrocious! I've had them twice and both times it tasted like someone baked them a couple days ago. You'd think with the crazy line ups there would be high turnover and everything would be relatively fresh! Or maybe because of the crazy lines they do all the baking well in advanced.

Should have seen the warning signs when I walked in close to opening (no line up yet) to see the layer cakes were already missing a third-half a cake's worth of slices.

Ask a Cicerone: The Best Beers for People Who Don't Like Beer

I don't normally like beer but I like wheat beers. It's the bitter hoppy flavour I don't like!

What do you guys prefer plastic or wooden

I use plastic for raw food, and a wooden cutting board for things that are cooked/eaten raw.

Suggestions for dessert tasting menus

I say pick a theme, i.e. Lemon, Chocolate, Blueberries, and make lots of small desserts based on the theme. Maybe, a creamy dessert, a tart/sour dessert and a cookie/biscuit.

Beets in lieu of red food coloring

Please let me know if you find a recipe that works! I get headaches when I eat large amounts of red food colouring in red velvet cake.

I used to think reactions like this were psychological until one day I got a massive headache and had no idea why and someone commented that my tongue was red from eating red velvet cake!

Perfect Quick-and-Easy French Toast

I once had french toast at a coffee shop that DEEP FRIED their french toast. I'm not going to lie, it was kind of amazing. Lots of fluffy egg curls around the edges and crispy edges.

The best edition of Joy of Cooking?


I was browsing eBay and noticed there's many different editions of The Joy of Cooking for sale. My question is which is the best edition? Should I just buy a new copy of the latest version? What is everyone's thoughts?

I know there's lots of other good cookbooks and I own a few, but I feel like I'm missing out on something by not having Joy of Cooking.

Ordering beyond the signature dish

During a trip to NYC my sister and I went to Pearl Oyster Bar. While we loved the lobster roll (sorry Kenji), what really blew me away was the fried oysters and salt crusted shrimp! It got me thinking about dishes that are as good, if not better than the dish that a place is known for.

Anything that we should order instead of the most popular/famous dish?

Worth the wait?

My family absolutely HATES waiting for anything. Waiting in line, waiting for food to cook, etc. In fact when we were teenagers my sister once insisted I paid her minimum wage for every hour she had to wait in line to go into the Gap with me on Boxing Day. Actually she's still like that, never mind.

What recipes or restaurants do you think are "worth waiting for"? Either a recipe that requires a long time to cook, a restaurant that you have to wait in line to get into, a restaurant that you have to book a month ahead, etc. You get the idea!

Regional Food Terms

After overhearing someone who I assume is a fellow Canuck trying to order a "double double*" in NYC I've been thinking about regional/local food terms.

The first thing that came to mind is the pop/soda debate and subs/hoagies/grinders/heroes.

Is there any regional food terms that come to mind either where you're from or that you found particularly interesting?

*Coffee with two creams and two sugars

Chocolate Babka Recipe

I just finished the chocolate babka I bought at Russ and Daughters during a visit to NYC. Now I'm going through Babka withdrawal.

Is it hard to make babka at home? Where's the best recipe? I know there's a no knead recipe on SE but has anyone tried it? Can I bake it in two loaf pans and freeze one?

Foods that are good frozen

Inspired by Max's comment that Pop Tarts are good frozen, what's your favourite item to eat frozen? I like York Peppermint patties frozen. I have yet to try freezing Pop Tarts. My friend the health nut eats frozen grapes and oranges in the summer.

Most underrated and overrated ingredients

What do you my fellow Serious Eaters think are the most underrated and overrated ingredients?

The most underrated ingredients I would say are water and flat leaf parsley. I find water is such a key ingredient, great for thinning sauces or poaching etc. Don't get my wrong I love stock and wine, but sometimes water does the trick, especially starchy pasta water when thinning pasta sauces. Flat leaf parsley I find also adds a great freshness to long cooked dishes.

The most overrated ingredients I would have to say are chocolate and bacon (please don't hate me). Don't get me wrong I love chocolate and bacon! I just think they've become a crutch for a lot of cooks. A lot of mediocre dishes seem to use chocolate and bacon to hide less than stellar ingredients or technique.

What's the best chocolate chip cookie recipe?

I'm constantly keeping my eye out for a great chocolate chip cookie recipe. I've made the recipe on the bag of chips, the Ad hoc recipe, The New York Times chocolate chip cookie, a recipe with vanilla pudding, etc. Lately my favourite has been the Canyon Ranch Chocolate Chip cookie. I initially made it because it was "healthy" and then discovered I really like the flavour and texture!

What are your favourite chocolate chip cookie recipes my fellow Serious Eaters? Is it one of the recipes I mentioned? Or maybe it's the kind you unwrap, slice and bake (I won't judge). Does anyone have a super secret recipe passed down from generation to generation?

Favourite Leftover Hacks

While I was making beef stroganoff with leftover roast beef, I started thinking about other ways to re-purpose leftovers. I've already heard of roast beef turning into shepherds pie, and leftover spaghetti being turned into a pasta cake.

What's your favourite hack for leftovers or one you've been meaning to try?

Are there any so good that you'll cook a dish just so you'll have leftovers to re-purpose.

Wine that goes with Chinese Food

Since it appears that Chinese food is the second most popular food this time of year (after Turkey or some other large piece of roasted meat), it got me thinking about wines that go with Chinese food.

Growing up in a family of Chinese teetotalers, our drink of choice at dinners out was cold water, hot tea or if it was a really special occasion Coke (never Pepsi). At weddings people seemed to mostly drink beer or whiskey,

Of course we know champagne goes with everything, but are there other wines that go especially well with Chinese? What's your favourite?

Death of the Dinner Party?

I read an article on Mental Floss called "What Killed the Dinner Party" ( and it occurred to me I can't remember the last time I went to a true dinner party. I've been to people's houses for dinner yes, but only a very small group or a potluck. Dinner was never the "main event".

Does anyone else still have old school dinner parties?

Best Waffle recipe for Chicken and Waffles

I've found my favourite Fried Chicken recipe (America's Test Kitchen recipe in case you were wondering). Now I'm looking for a good waffle recipe to serve with chicken. I'm looking for either traditional waffle recipes but also interested in seeing unique waffles, cornbread waffles, sour dough, etc.


Most annoying food personalities

I know everyone here already loves to hate on Sandra Lee, Rachael Ray, and Guy Fieri. I was talking to a friend and found out we both can't stand Roger Mooking! He had this cooking show in Canada and he had a show with Aaron Sanchez. He also has restaurants with ridiculous names like Nyood.

Also, for some reason Anthony Bourdain annoys me. I used to be a huge fan and I still like his travel shows, but there's something about him that bothers me. I don't know what it is! Maybe it's the fact that he was in a terrible R&B group in the early 90s.

Is there anyone else that annoys you on tv/newspapers/magazines/etc?

Regional Foods

This may have been discussed already but I thought it would be fun to discuss regional foods/recipes.

My sister lives in Ottawa and over there they have a fried dough pastry called "Beaver Tails". Closer to my neck of the woods fairs and festivals boast "Elephant Ears" which to me taste like sweet fried pizza dough.

I feel like I should also mention Toronto's St Lawrence Market and their peameal bacon sandwich.

Does anyone else have a favourite regional dish? The more obscure/"Only in ---" the better!

How to use jarred black truffles?

My sister bought me a black truffle in a jar from Spain. It's in a clear glass jar with some kind of brine (not oil). How should I use it? Are there jarred truffle specific recipes? I don't want to ruin this edible souvenir.

Do you wash...

A few members of my family are really obsessed with cleanliness. I care about hygiene as much as the next person, but I'm constantly being scolded for not washing certain things before cooking them.

Some examples:
-Not rewashing salad in a bag
-Not washing onions
-Not washing eggs before I crack them into recipes
-Not washing meat and poultry before cooking it

Are these foods that are commonly washed? Does everyone here wash these foods before cooking them?

Has anyone used wonton wrappers for ravioli?

I tried to use fresh pasta sheets from the refrigerator case at the grocery store to make pumpkin ravioli and that was an epic failure. I'm now thinking of resorting to wonton wrappers before I dust off the pasta roller and make my own fresh pasta dough.

Has anyone done ravioli with wonton wrappers? How did it turn out? My concern is that wonton wrappers are too thin and will tear!


Canadians Grocery Shopping in the USA, What should we buy?

My sister and I are going shopping in the States in a few weeks. Being the Serious Eaters we are, we'll of course have to hit up a grocery store or two. What should we buy? Is there any really unique or interesting products that are sold in the States that aren't sold in Canada? What are your favourites?

What do my fellow Canucks buy in the States?

Egg Separating Video

I just saw this amusing video from China about how to separate an egg using a water bottle. I thought my fellow Serious Eaters would enjoy it too.

I usually just use my (clean) hand to separate eggs but I may try this just for kicks.

How do you like to cook Pork Belly?

I bought a pork belly and am thinking of either serving it sliced up and over rice or in Korean style tacos.

What's your favourite method for cooking pork belly? I've seen it roasted in the oven and I've also seen it braised. What's the best method?


Do utensils affect taste?

I was eating a Frosty at home today with a metal spoon and I realized that ice cream tastes better with a plastic spoon. My neighbour insists Tim Hortons coffee tastes better out of a paper cup than a ceramic mug. My mom says everything tastes better in a martini glass but that's another story. We all agree sushi tastes better with wooden chopsticks.

Does any else have a similar eccentricity? I heard a rumour caviar tastes best with a mother of pearl spoon but nobody is willing to sponsor such research for me.

Dried potatoes at Latino store

I was at a Latino grocery store buying some hominy and I noticed next to it was bags of dried potatoes. How are you supposed to cook dried potatoes? What's the benefit of dried potatoes over fresh?


Ordering food and ingredients online

Alton Brown is my favourite tv cook/chef. He's always suggesting you order ingredients online. Does anyone order ingredients or food online? What do you order and where do you order it from?

After searching for it in stores unsuccessfully, I ordered freeze dried corn online once to make the Corn Cookies from the Momofuku Milk Bar cookbook. The shipping cost almost as much as the actual corn unfortunately, but the corn should last a long time.

Quick's Darth Vader Burger

Would you eat Quick's Star Wars themed burger with a black bun?

I'll get things started: no.

Food that smells better than it tastes

The other day while popping some popcorn, I said as I always say when eating popcorn "This smells better than it tastes". It got me thinking about other foods that smell better than they actually taste:

bacon (I still love bacon, but wish it tasted as good as it smelled)
roast turkey
frying onions

Mind you I still like these foods, but find the smells are better than the food itself.

Anyone care to add to this list?

Non-Pork Stuffing for Thanksgiving

This year I'm having my parents-in-law over for Thanksgiving for the first time. I always make sausage stuffing balls that go over very well, but this year I have to adjust because my mother-in-law doesn't eat pork. I want to... More

Scooped: Black Sesame and Orange Ice Cream

In Asia, black sesame ice cream is as classic a flavor as vanilla in the States. There's not much to improve on it—it just works. Ground black sesame seeds take on the texture of tahini in that "so creamy it changes your perception of what creamy can be" sort of way. The rich, roasted flavors of the seeds, which give off an aroma as complex as fine chocolate, are a perfect match for a light custard. More