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Charcoal Versus Gas Grills: The Definitive Guide

I've never actually owned a gas grill but I've considered it a few times mostly for the reasons that Kenji says in the article. I like many aspects of charcoal grilling better but gas seems more convenient sometimes. I feel like I would probably grill more often if I had a gas grill actually. That being said, I won't spring for a decent gas grill over my current cheap weber grill until I get a house of my own. I'd be afraid of anything better than a cheap weber grill walking away where I currently live.

Sous Vide Your Way to the Juiciest, Most Flavor-Packed Corn on the Cob

@bdcbbq In the actual recipe, Kenji says to just trim the ends off the corn but not to shuck it at all. If TJBREW was following the recipe then he would have left the husk and silk intact. I probably will shuck and de-silk though next time I make it this way though since getting the silk off the hot corn is somewhat hazardous.

I wonder if the old trick my mother used to use might help at all with getting more flavor as Kenji is trying to acheive with cooking in the husk. She used to tell us to save some of the softer inner husks when we were shucking and de-silking the corn then she would put those husks on top of the water when boiling the corn. Transferring that idea to this recipe, I would save some of the inner husks and get rid of the rest and the silk and then put the saved husks in the sous vide bag along with the butter and other aromatics. It seems to me that would lend some flavor to the corn but at the same time you don't have to get rid of all the annoying silk from a rocket hot ear of corn.

Crimes Against Pizza: An Opinionated Guide to Not Messing Up Your Pie

Well you lost me from the 3rd paragraph. You talk about how diverse pizza can be then completely dismiss Chicago deep dish? While you may not like it much, at least admit that it is pizza. I've had other pizzas that are much less deserving of the term than Chicago deep dish but I doubt you wouldn't call them pizza at all.

The Food Lab's All-American Meatloaf

I made this last night for dinner and it was fine, but not great in my opinion. I followed the recipe pretty exactly including grinding my own chuck (but not the pork since I had some ground pork in my freezer). It was too easily crumbled in my opinion. The leftovers are a different story though, and really leftovers are the best part of making meatloaf. The gelatin and cheese solidified and made for a nice solid cold meatloaf which was perfect for sandwiches for lunch today

Sous Vide Your Way to the Juiciest, Most Flavor-Packed Corn on the Cob

If the butter flavor doesn't get through the husk at all, then why bother using it in the recipe then? same question about the aromatics as well I guess.

The Food Lab: The Best Meatloaf

@The Black Knight You do realize that you are actually using some of the flavors in your meatloaf that you're turning your nose up at right? Your A1 steak sauce has garlic and celery seed in it. Then your worcestershire has anchovies second in the list of ingredients along with garlic in the third spot. I'm sure the raisin paste, orange puree, molasses, and tamarind paste all contribute to the meaty flavors that marmite and soy sauce would give in this recipe.

I'm with you though on the carrots and celery not really needing to be in meatloaf. I think the buttermilk is more about adding more moisture to the meatloaf instead of fat which your breakfast sausage would do. I'm not sure that I'll like this recipe as much as my mom's meatloaf either but I'm willing to give it a shot just to try something different.

The Food Lab: The Best Meatloaf

What is this "reheat for sandwiches" thing you speak of?! My favorite part of meatloaf is the cold meatloaf sandwiches the next day made with cheap white bread and ketchup. (I'd also be interested in non-porky alternatives if there even are any)

Everything You Need to Know to Buy Better Shrimp

@bdcbbq Thanks for posting about the Hoosier Shrimp place, I never had any idea that there were any shrimp farms like that in the midwest. Unfortunately it is a bit too far for me to want to drive to for just shrimp though. (About 90 miles one way from where I am a bit inside Illinois) I'll have to remember it though if I'm in the area during those times for another reason.

Everything You Need to Know to Buy Better Shrimp

Another typo in the sentence "Formed or fresh, they can have a distinctly shrimpy flavor..." or at least I hope it's a typo. Formed shrimp sounds like something McD's might serve along side their "chicken" nuggets.

I can't believe that loophole about "processed" shrimp not needing to have origin and catch method. I have always assumed that if it doesn't say where it's from then it's probably from Asia and I try to avoid it. It's tough to find well labeled shrimp at the standard grocery stores, even more so because at least half of the shrimp I see is sold pre-cooked which has horrible texture as you said..

Chicago's Harold's is the Best Bad Fried Chicken on Earth

There's been a Harold's Chicken Shack in Kankakee IL for a while now but I've never bothered to go try it. The only reason really is the fact that there is no parking there. Maybe I'll give it a shot sometime though.

The Food Lab: Super-Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Dang it Kenji, would you just give us your book already?! (You purchased this item on February 2, 2015.) I want to try your recipe for biscuits but I want to try it with your sausage gravy recipe right away as well! How do these biscuits compare to your benchmark of Popeye's biscuits? Obviously these have the advantage that you can customize as much as you want, and that cheese/scallion variation looks great.

The Food Lab: How to Sear Scallops

How I wish I could get dry scallops nearby. At least I know why my attempts to make seared scallops have failed in the past. I actually first learned about STP from watching Good Eats, but it's nice having a refresher about it. I really don't understand why companies think it is ok to so drastically change a product like this and of course they are rewarded because most consumers don't know about it and just say "Ohh! cheap scallops!".

The Food Lab's Guide to Crispy Sous-Vide Chicken Thighs

@timtee With sous vide cooking, you pretty much need to drop the expectation of an exact time because the time is much more flexible than it is with traditional cooking methods. With a traditional recipe that says to cook chicken for an hour and you leave it in for an hour and half, your food is likely to be horribly overcooked. (Nevermind the fact that saying to cook meat for a length of time rather than cook until internal temperature reaches xxx° isn't that great of an idea anyway.) With sous vide, the chicken is safe to eat cooked at 165°F for an hour. At 165°F for 4 hours it is still done and not overcooked and the texture is different than the chicken cooked for just an hour. The chicken is STILL done but not overcooked at 165°F for 8 hours. The texture is different still than the 1 hour and 4 hour chickens. It is really just a matter of personal preference on how you like your food cooked and how much time you have to make it. I have started keeping a log of how I cook various things via sous vide and each time I record how much I liked the food cooked at that temperature. Please note that there ARE times when the timing does matter and those recipes will be more exact. Eggs are one thing that comes to mind where timing matters with sous vide.

The Food Lab's Guide to Crispy Sous-Vide Chicken Thighs

@hausflip I don't think chicken thighs are the best example of a reason to cook sous vide. Steak is a pretty good example for a short cooking application. It is very easy to get perfect doneness from edge to edge with sous vide and then a quick sear at the end to develop more flavor. You don't have to worry about taking the steak out of the pan at the exact right time since a few minutes more don't matter in most sous vide recipes.

For longer cooking foods with more connective tissue like beef short ribs, you just can't replicate the texture of 72-hour short ribs using any conventional cooking methods I know of.

The Food Lab's Guide to Crispy Sous-Vide Chicken Thighs

@Ananonnie Thanks, I never knew that the USDA guideline was 165°F for dark meat as well. I just assumed that the guideline was 175°F for thighs and legs because many many times I've heard people say to cook turkeys/chickens to 165°F for the breast and 175°F for the leg and thighs. So now I wonder why I've seen so many recipes calling for 175°F in the thigh.

The Food Lab's Guide to Crispy Sous-Vide Chicken Thighs

Thanks Kenji, I'm glad you answered the question about why sous vide right away. I believe you've said in the past that poultry thighs were so forgiving that you didn't really see the need for doing them sous vide.

Did you do any tests going above the 165°F mark at all? I know it is safe to eat at 165°F with enough time but many people (like my mother) swear buy the "175°F for dark meat or you'll die" idea. My guess is that it would probably be similar to the 165°F results only quite a bit dryer meat. The fat might render off better though at 170°F or 175°F though.

Chicken-Fried Chicken With Cream Gravy

@whoizzit When I make this I would actually purposely make extra crunch bits by frying the bits in the leftover flour and adding those to the final gravy. I learned to do that from my mother when she made buttermilk fried chicken and it makes the gravy 10 times better with the extra bits.

The Food Lab: Chicken-Fried Chicken Is Country Cooking at Its Most Comforting

Awesome looking recipe as usual Kenji. I can't believe I never even thought of using boneless skinless thighs for this instead. It's kindof weird how I love boneless skinless thighs and use them pretty often but some recipes I still get boneless skinless breasts by default for.

The Serious Eats Tomato Shopping Guide

Thanks for the great info! I am fortunate enough to have locally grown tomatoes at the grocery stores I frequent but there is still nothing better than getting them straight from the farmer at the farmers market. There isn't a ton of variety at the farmers market but they still can't be beat since they are picked red and awesome. Summer is the only time I ever eat BLTs since tomatoes really make or break the sandwich.

The Chain Breaker: A Dairy Queen Like No Other

@SarahCL I remember that too, it was basically a dilly bar that was slightly thicker and one side had the fudge and peanuts on it. It was easier to eat and I really have no idea why they changed to the cup style they make now. Maybe they're easier to make the current way. I'd take either one right now too now that you've got me thinking about it!

10 Common Crimes Against Cheese You Don't Have to Commit

I admit to using plastic wrap (or ziplock bags) and I'm sorry! I always keep my wedge of Parmigiano-Reggiano vacuum sealed in a reusable bag. I open it up, grate off what I need, and reseal and revacuum it right away. It stays good for a long while that way!

The Chain Breaker: A Dairy Queen Like No Other

I live in Kankakee Illinois where the first DQ ice cream was served even though we don't actually have the first store. Our 3 DQs in the area look pretty close to this store here and we've never had a DQ Brazier at all. It is only in the last 5-10 years actually that any of the stores have been open year round. One of the local DQ stores used to actually sell Christmas trees during the off season actually!

The Best Charcoal Grills Under $500, 2015 Edition

I'm glad to see Weber still gets top billion as the value priced but still good quality charcoal grill. I have the version that is probably about one step up from the cheapest one and it is still just fine after the 9 years that I've owned it plus the probably 5 years that my dad used it before that. I replace the grates when necessary of course but couldn't be happier with the value.

@Max Good I'm sure I can find reviews aplenty on your website but are you going to be doing a piece on charcoal for Serious Eats as well sometime?

The Serious Eats Mushroom Shopping Guide

@danny6114 I don't know if it applies to all images on SE but in this particular post you can right click on the image and select "open image in new tab" (in Chrome, the wording might be different for other browsers) to see a larger image. Making them clickable for a bigger image wouldn't be a bad idea though.

12 Grilling Mistakes You Don't Have to Make (But Probably Do)

I have always used a chimney starter when grilling but I used to have problems where occasionally the paper would be done burning and not light the charcoal. I don't know if the charcoal was damp or not enough air flow. Ever since I started putting a bit of vegetable oil on my newspaper as Alton Brown used to show on Good Eats I have not had a single problem with getting my chimney starter to light charcoal.