The ultimate party snack, now in a 100% animal product-free form. This vegan queso dip is packed with a gooey cashew and potato-based nacho sauce, soy-lentil chorizo, avocados, scallions, tomatoes with chilies, and black beans. The flavor is so good even your omnivore friends won't know that it's vegan. How do I know? Because I even tricked my avowed meat-eating friend to dig in before telling him that it was vegan. It's that good.
I wanted to make a vegan chorizo recipe that doesn't just come close to regular chorizo in the flavor department, but outright nails it. I wanted a meat-free chorizo with textural contrast up the wazoo, and a chorizo that changes texture as you cook it just like its meat-based counterpart. I wanted a chorizo that is tangy, rich, and complex. In short, I wanted nothing less than the best darned meat-free chorizo around. And what I want, I get.
There's a dearth of good vegan cheese alternatives out there. Some are downright abysmal with tofu-like flavor or watery, grainy interiors. Others come closer to the mark. But even the very best melting-style cheeses are a far cry from the real deal. The good news is that there are two cheese-style products I've found that are not just good-for-vegan food, but are good enough that anyone should be happy eating them.
This easy bean appetizer takes only five minutes to prepare, but it does rely on some high quality ingredients for optimal flavor. Tender, creamy giant lima beans are worth the splurge when you're coating them with your best extra-virgin olive oil, sherry vinegar, and a pinch of smoked paprika. Celery, shallots, and garlic round out the flavor profile and add crunchy texture.
A grilled cheese is a grilled cheese, right? I mean, it's the first meal that most of us learn how to cook at home by ourselves. It's the perfect midnight snack or soup-dipper. It's great for kids but is never turned down by an adult. It's salty, gooey, crisp, buttery, and comforting in all the right ways. But there's grilled cheese, then there's GRILLED CHEESE. Here are 20 great ways to tell the difference.
This is the bowl of vegetarian ramen I've been working towards ever since I first ventured into the vegetable-based foothills of Mount Ramen two years ago. It's hands-down the best bowl of ramen I've ever made. And it can all be yours, with a little bit of heavy-duty climbing, that is.
I'm on a mission to convince you to make shirataki noodles a pantry staple. That's right, I'm talking about those slippery yam-starch noodles packed in water-filled bags that boast their calorie- and gluten-free properties. But I want to be clear: I don't give a damn about their supposed health properties. Honestly, I think they're delicious. Let me explain.
Crispy tofu is marinated in garlic, coriander root, and lemongrass, and stuffed into a Vietnamese-style sandwich with pickled carrots, daikon, cilantro, cucumber, and jalapeños. The trick is a low and slow cooking method and a double coating of the flavorful marinade.
There's a lot of bad tofu out there (particularly bad grilled tofu, I'd add), and more often than not, it's because people try to cook it like it's a piece of meat. Tofu is really easy to dislike when it's soggy, mushy, bland, or burnt. But great tofu—tofu with a tender center surrounded by a well-seasoned, crisp crust—is one of the most satisfying bites of food I can think of. Here are 9 tips to help you grill tofu so good even tofu-haters might come around to it.
This quick and easy dairy-free, fat-free Colombian vegetable soup comes out creamy and comforting thanks to the natural thickening power of potatoes. No added cream, milk, or butter means that the soup shines with vegetable flavor from peas, fava beans, and carrots. The stovetop version takes about 45 minutes of hands-off work while the pressure cooker can cut that time down to under half an hour.
Caponata, the Sicilian dish of eggplant and other vegetables sautéed in a sweet-and-sour sauce can be shockingly flavorful the first time you try it. And I'm not using the word shockingly lightly here. Packed with extra-virgin olive oil, raisins, pine nuts, herbs, vinegar, sugar, and a slew of other ingredients, it's the kind of dish you have to recalibrate your whole mouth for in order to really appreciate it. But once that recalibration is done, man oh man is it great stuff.
Whether you're a vegan or an omnivore, the menu you choose for Valentine's day can say as much about the state of your relationship as deciding whether to go out or stay in (hint: don't go out). But no matter what you're looking for, there's a menu here for you.
It's easy to fall into the all-carbs-all-the-time trap when you stick to a vegan diet. Pasta is just such an easy, inexpensive, and appealing meal. But the good news is that it's even easier to get out of that rut. The secret is to shrug off the shackles of authenticity and bulk up the sauce with tons of cooked vegetables.
There's nothing boring about a good Parmigiano-Reggiano's inimitably intense, nutty, funky flavor. But wouldn't it be nice if we had some other options from time to time? Now we do: This 100% vegan, deeply savory, slightly tangy condiment can be folded into or sprinkled onto your food for a big hit of flavor. It can stand in for Parm in a pasta dish, but it's also great sprinkled on salads, sandwiches, roasted meats, grilled fish, burgers, or pizza.
Despite its translation—"fish fragrant eggplant,"—yu xiang qie zi actually contains no seafood or meat products whatsoever. It gets its name from the combination of hot, sour, and sweet flavors that are typically served with fish in its native Sichuan. Smoky eggplant is stir-fried until tender, then tossed with a quick sauce flavored with chilies, black vinegar, sugar, and ginger, and garlic for a hearty, flavor-packed dish that comes together in one wok with minimal effort.
It's difficult to make good bread today, but it's darned easy to make hot, fresh, world-class bread tomorrow. This focaccia, topped with olives, rosemary, and pistachios, requires no kneading or stretching and results in a crisp, olive oil-scented crust and a puffy, moist, well-risen internal crumb with just the right amount of tender chew.
Creamy, rich, and packed with nutty, sharp, tangy, cheesy flavor, this 100% vegan loaded potato soup relies on a few secret ingredients and techniques to satisfy even the hungriest eater. Vegan mushroom bacon bits, broccoli, and scallions top it off.
My vegan mushroom "bacon" is one of my favorite
vegan recipes ever. I like to think of these things not as a vegan substitute for bacon but as an awesome condiment or topping all their own. The only real downside to them is that they're small. Made with cremini mushrooms that are cooked until crisp, they end up less than an inch long, which means that you can't pick them up with two fingers and bite off the end with that satisfying CRUNCH the way you can with a standard bacon strip. Today, I'm updating the recipe with a new mushroom suggestion, and a few minor tweaks to improve flavor and texture across the board.
My wife Adri and I ate a lot of salads while on honeymoon in Vietnam a few years back. My favorite was one we tasted at a small restaurant in Saigon made with cold rice noodles, poached shrimp, pomelo, peanuts, and tons of herbs. The challenge for me was how to make a salad like this—light and filling—while also adhering to a strictly vegan ingredients list.
Who Needs Parmesan? Olive Oil and Miso Paste Pack This Hearty Vegan Polenta and Kale Soup With Flavor
This easy one-pot polenta and kale soup hails from Italy, but we give it a distinctly Japanese twist: In place of the Parmesan called for in a traditional recipe, we finish ours up with the addition of miso paste, soy sauce, and scallions. It's savory, rich, and 100% vegan.
Welcome to the fourth year of The Vegan Experience! All month we're exploring the vegan lifestyle, from dining out to eating in, developing a slew of delicious recipes for vegan appetizers, snacks, and entrees along the way. The first year I went at it solo. The second year, I was joined by a few colleagues and readers. Last year, the impossible happened and Serious Eats Overlord Ed Levine himself came along for the ride. Year after year, the number of voices in support rise, the number of readers searching for vegan recipes increases. I know it already: This is going to be the best Vegan Experience yet.
If you were to pick a president and el tigre numero uno of the ragù world, it'd be ragù Napoletano, a meaty stew with big chunks of beef, pork, and sausages simmered until fall-apart tender in a rich tomato sauce flavored with wine, onions, garlic, basil, and plenty of good Southern Italian olive oil. It's the precursor to Italian-American Sunday gravy: just add some meatballs, serve it with spaghetti, and you're there. It's also the perfect dish for a lazy Sunday with family or friends at home.
Whether you're serving it with chili or simply with a smear of butter and a drizzle of honey, good cornbread with a moist, tender crumb and and intense corn flavor is one of life's greatest pleasures. So how do you take one of life's greatest pleasures and make it even more, well, pleasurable? Simple: Add some browned butter to it.
Upgrade Your Tamale Pie With Braised Skirt Steak and a Brown Butter Cornbread Crust (Plus: A Quick and Easy 45-Minute Skillet Version!)
Tamale pie is a dish that screams for an update. I mean, it's cornbread and chili all rolled into one! Just imagine how great it could be if we took the time to make a real, deeply flavored, meaty chili from scratch, and topped with tender, moist, crisp-edged, buttery cornbread with those chili juices seeping up into it as it bakes in the oven. That's the kind of meal I'd love to come home to after a long day out in the cold.
When writing a new chili recipe, it occurred to me that over the years, I've learned a few things about making good chili. Since we're in the middle of chili season, now seemed like as good a time as ever to update all of my previous excursions to take advantage of some of the new tricks I've learned along the way.
What kind of turkey should I buy? What size? How far in advance? And what the heck do I do with it once it's at home? All of these burning questions and more, straight ahead.
Here's one late night sandwich that isn't a greasebomb. Good for lunch as well.
A few months ago, my wife and I spent all of 24 hours in Naples on our way home from Sicily. It was probably the second-most pizza-packed 24 hours of my life (the first being when I took my Colombian brother-in-law on a whirlwind pizza tour of New York). We hit over a half dozen pizzerias over lunch alone, and a few more for dinner. Here now, I present to you the Serious Eats guide to Eating Pizza in Naples.
Ever made a traditional Peking duck? Turns out it's a pretty involved process, requiring not only multiple steps but multiple days, cooking apparatuses, and spices. The end result: an incredibly crispy, juicy bird that's seriously delicious. Come along with Serious Eats's own Carey Jones as she learns how to make Peking Duck. Chef Brian Ray of Buddakan gives us the grand tour.
We're looking at what I like to call the "Big 3" of Cheerios: Original, Honey Nut and MultiGrain. Any die-hard original Cheerios fans out there? Can we talk about the awesomeness of Honey Nut and MultiGrain?
Last week, we examined the distinction between single malt and blended Scotch whiskies. Today, we'll step back a bit and take a more detailed (much more detailed) look at the single malt. I'll describe what single malts are, explain how they're made and aged, discuss the concept of Scotch terroir, and explore some of the regional variations. Grab a tasting glass and let's get started!
Uh oh. The buzzer rings. Friends are coming over to spread holiday cheer and you panic. Serve frozen dumplings...again?! You can do better than that. Print out this list of easy-to-assemble, stress-free, mostly-sub-20-minutes-to-prepare munchies and paste it to the fridge. Here are 60+ dips, hors d'oeuvres, small bites, toasty snacks, sweet nibbles, appetizers, and more festive munchies to prepare in a snap.
The Serious Eats Cookie Swap has become an annual tradition. We break out the Duane Reade tinsel and twinkle lights, and are forced to do a major office detox to make room for cookies. Many, many cookies. (OK, maybe a dozen doughnuts snuck in this year too). It was our third year swapping, and as per tradition, the tables were covered with butter-laden treats. Our NYC-based contributors really pulled out their ninja baking skills. Get all the recipes here.
Our recipe for Bacon Banh Mi brings our favorite Vietnamese sandwich home, swapping out the usual array of cold cuts and charcuterie for bacon but staying true to the other elements that make this sandwich so balanced and irresistible.
When you think about Thanksgiving and you think about various elements of the Thanksgiving meal, it seems like you're just waiting through the big meal to get to the pie. I really believe this, which is why I always fantasized about an all-pie Thanksgiving. (Anyone with me on this?) At an editorial meeting about a month ago, we were at the office talking about Thanksgiving coverage and I shared this fantasy with the team. Knowing how much I adore and obsess over pie, the Serious Eats editors weren't too shocked, so we did the only thing we know how to do: make it happen.
Urban legend has it that some industrial candy snafu botched the names of 3 Musketeers and Milky Way. The tale has a certain logic. 3 Musketeers doesn't have three ingredients but Milky Way does. And the very name Milky Way recalls the smooth, uninterrupted creaminess found in 3 Musketeers. Those kinds of wonky urban legends ran amok in the eighties, but we have the internet now, so let's clear this stuff up. It's not a tasty tabloid tale of "Switched at Birth!" but rather "Murder, She Wrote."
When you first joined me in my quest to unlock the secrets of culinary time travel, I told you it would take equal parts science and magic to make the foods that could power the flux capacitor of the mind. I said, "leave the DeLorean in the garage, preheat your oven to one point twenty one gigawatts, and rev that Kitchen Aid to eighty eight mph. We're going back to the Eighties." And we did. But while there, what if some careless action altered our timeline? Could we, like Marty McFly, inadvertently create an alternate universe? One where the Keebler Soft Batch Cookie tastes freaking delicious? Friends, this isn't speculation. I have done such a thing.
Dried mango was matched up with cilantro, garlic, and jalapeno to make this juicy chicken link. It's bright, fresh, and fruity.
[Photograph: Kenji Alt] Want more details? Here are the ins-n-outs. Follow Kenji on Facebook or Twitter....
This week we survived a salt and vinegar chips tasting (try feeling your tongue after one of those!), played fetch with Hambone, special-ordered the semi-discontinued Rice Krispies Treats Cereal, and more. And if you're wondering, yes, RKTC would be RK cereal that turned into treats then transformed back into cereal again (full circle!).
This week at Serious Eats World Headquarters, we ate loads of chocolate sandwich cookies for our Oreo/Faux-reo taste test, filled up our office with Sandwich Festival goods, watched Ed attempt to feed Hambone, and more (and by "more" we mean "Hambone Hambone Hambone").
I'm not sure how else to break this except to just come out and say it. On Wednesday morning, my French bulldog Dumpling was struck by a bus outside of my apartment building. He died in my arms on the way to the emergency room.
This week at Serious Eats World Headquarters, Dumpling napped and drooled, a swarm of bees took shelter in a nearby mailbox, I confirmed I don't like absinthe, and a few of us met some cows (ok, that last one happened far, far away from SEHQ). The slideshow is 75 percent Dumpling in one way, 125 percent in another. Enjoy!
This "Memphis-style" is my favorite to make at home—it takes the aspects of sweet tomato-based sauces I grew up on, but by dialing back the sugar and amping up the vinegar, creates a sauce where seasonings and spice are more defined and achieves a pleasing balance between the main defining aspects of a barbecue sauce.
These are the only fancy-restaurant fried clams I think are really worth the cash ($14 half/$26 full). That they start with Ipswich bellies makes all the difference; these juicy, sweet, whole-belly behemoths are harvested from the mud flats off Ipswich, where experts claim that the particularly nutrient-rich soil gives the bivalves their superior, almost nutty flavor.
Sherbets and sorbets require a spoon, but they date back to the Persian Empire, when vividly flavored fruit- or flower-based syrups were mixed with snow to make a cool, refreshing drink called sharbat.
Last Thursday morning, Dean Sparks, a dairy farmer from upstate New York stopped by the office with some cheese, eggs, and milk. They come from nymilk, a New York state consortium of around 35 upstate organic dairy farms that...
As food aesthetics go, the murky, rust-brown, pebbly lalla musa dal at Tamarind Bay Coastal Kitchen can't compare to the restaurant's other specialties like the fennel cream-sauced cauliflower dumplings or the spiced lobster tail. But famed Indian chefs like Julie Sahni don't consider this dish "the most exquisite of all dal preparations" for nothing, and speaking in terms of decadence, it outclasses the rest by a long shot.
For all that I've grilled (150-plus recipes and counting), there's always plenty of uncharted territory. One of those areas: planking. There aren't usually many planking recipes in cookbooks, save the ubiquitous planked salmon. Put simply, planking is cooking food directly on a piece of hardwood. When cooking this way, the surface of the food touching the wood picks up some of the plank's natural flavors.
I don't use the word magical lightly, but there really is something wondrous about making bagels at home. Maybe it's the shape. I think most everyone understands a loaf of bread, but the round shape with a hole ... well, it seems like a whole lot more work than simply plopping some dough in a loaf pan. But it's not. Really. Try making just one batch of these, and I'm sure you'll have the process down pat. Put on your sorcerer's robe and follow along!