• Location: Washington, DC

Essential Buenos Aires: Where to Eat and Drink If You Go to Argentina's Capital

DESNIVEL!!! That place was so good.

What are NYC's Most Overrated Restaurants?

I'm enjoying reading all the comments about Shake Shack - it seems like we got lucky here in DC with the offshoots. They aren't very crowded (I think I waited 20 minutes once?), and the food is hot and fresh (including the fries, which at the DC stores are NOT crinkle cut). I think of it as a better alternative to Five Guys.

I went there last week and was in and out in less than 10 minutes. Yum.

Salted Cashew Caramel Bars

Yum! Really good, with a few tweaks. I thought they were fantastic with a generous sprinkle of kosher salt over the top - the recipe isn't as salty as I would expect from something called "salted caramel." I think these would be even better with a bit less caramel (I ended up with a higher proportion of caramel to shortbread than the bars in the picture), a drizzle of dark chocolate, and maybe even a bit more salt.

Bake the Book: First Prize Pies

Rhubarb, I just can't get past the texture!

Suvir Saran's Black-Eyed Pea Curry

Yummy, with a few tweaks. I cut the salt by half (and used reduced sodium peas) and that was perfect. I also had to use greek yogurt because that's all my store had in stock, but that worked fine as well.

Use Indian bay leaves (tej patta) if you have them, they pair very nicely with the cinnamon.

And just watch out for the whole spices, and you'll be fine. You can always bundle them in some cheesecloth to make them easier to remove before serving.

Beyond Curry: Bhakri (Indian Unleavened Rice Bread)

Soooo... do we get a recipe? :)

Exploring the Many Faces of Chartreuse

Mmmm, I love the Elixir Vegetal. I basically use them as herb bitters. They're great in place of the absinthe in a Corpse Reviver.

Open Thread: What's Your Most Memorable College Dining Experience?

Wellesley had good food in general, but the desserts in the Tower dining hall always had way too much baking soda, so they tasted like detergent.

Looking back, it was probably a good thing :)

25 Meals for Under $10

Less than $10 per serving? That's great, but there's not a whole lot on this site (aside from really nice steaks) that cost more than $10 per. Kind of misleading...

The Brunch Dish: The Sweet Beat of Bongo Room

Ew. I have a serious sweet tooth, and I love junky brunch, but this is way too much.

Dinner Tonight: Potato and Pea Curry with Yogurt, Cumin, and Ginger

This is pretty good. It seems a little bland - I would fully brown the potatoes and double the spices. The peas (I used frozen) were also pretty mushy - I would add them closer to the end of cooking.

Basic Hummus from 'Jerusalem'

Am I the only one who thought this had way too much tahini? I couldn't even taste the chickpeas. I would definitely drop that to a 1:4 ratio next time. The texture was nice, though it's hard to think of hummus without any olive oil.

The Food Lab Lite: The Best Corn Chowder

Thanks, Kenji!

Just a suggestion - it's easier to get the milk out of the corn cobs with a vegetable peeler than the back of your knife. I just made fried corn (my family's version of creamed corn) yesterday and it really sped up the process.

Cereal Eats: We Try All the Honey Bunches of Oats Flavors

Pecan is my favorite (GET IN MY BELLY!!!!), followed closely by Almond and Honey Roasted.

I cannot for the life of me figure out why my boyfriend does not like this brand of cereal. Oh well, more for me. He can have his weird tasteless Crispix.

The Food Lab Lite: Five Minute Miso-Glazed Toaster Oven Salmon

I agree with luosha - I never eat wild salmon because it's so expensive (at least $20/pound in my area). U.S. farmed catfish is a great, affordable option, which is rated as a "Best Choice" on Seafood Watch!

But then again, I was raised on catfish in the South, so I don't think it tastes muddy at all. If is tastes bad, are you really getting a good piece of fish?

Oversized soft drinks to be banned in N.Y.C...

Is this just for single servings, or also for 1-2L bottles? If it's the latter I could see this having a huge impact on wholesale beverage purchasing - especially catering. If you need, oh, 40 liters of Coke for a party, it's going to be waaaaay more expensive and wasteful to buy that quantity in small bottles. Just a thought.

7 Can't-Miss Dosas in NYC

King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking's Micro-Brewery Honey-Wheat Bread

Seriously, you couldn't decide what to do with half a beer? :)

Catering/Food Business Supplies

Oriental Trading has great bulk paper/gift supplies.

The 'Big 3' U.S. candy bars?

The top 3 sellers? Reese's, M&Ms, and Snickers.

My favorites? Mounds, Snickers, and Dove milk chocolate.

21+ Ways to Upgrade Your Grilled Cheese

Forget the buttered bread - it's all about mayo. It's easy to prep, and your bread will come out perfectly toasted every time.

Sweet & Sour Brisket with Pomegranate Molasses and Dried Fruit

Yum! My only suggestion is to puree the sauce in batches - it's too much to put in a standard 12-cup food processor without making it leak.

What Are Your Favorite Purchases in the Duty Free Shop?

@killatofu, next time, get a direct flight if possible. It's legal to carry duty free liquids purchased inside security, you just won't be able to bring them onto any connecting domestic flights. I'm quoting US/EU policy here, though, so there may be a restriction in Israel I'm not aware of.

I recently went to Paris with my parents and I could bring wine/liquor back (direct flight to Dulles), but they couldn't (connected in Atlanta to fly to Nashville).

Eyewitness Booze Investigation: Absolut Miami

I'm with you - I love the Absolut Boston flavor, it's the only vodka I ever bother buying. I like it with lemon soda.

Pudding...more than just mush?

I recommend making pudding from scratch, with actual fat and sugar :) Just eat less of it. But it's really delicious and so much better than anything you'll ever get out of a box.

Chestnut honey?

The caterer for an event I planned gave me a jar of leftover chestnut honey after the party yesterday. (Plus several big hunks of Parmesan. I love my job.) The flavor is wonderful but very distinctive, so I'd love to cook with it instead of just putting it in my tea.

Any ideas? I have a food processor and a stand mixer but no ice cream maker (damn).



Does anyone else have trouble with the CAPTCHAs on this site? I can't email articles directly to people because I can't seem to decode any of the images correctly. Kind of frustrating, admins.

My recommendations from a recent trip (NC and SC)

Hi all! I just got back from a trip to Wilmington, Raleigh, Charleston, and points in between, and since I had such good luck mining the SE archives for restaurant recommendations, I thought I'd tell you about our experiences :)

Wilmington, NC - We had a surprisingly good dinner at the Copper Penny - looks like an ordinary neighborhood bar, but the food is actually good. I had a seared tuna sandwich which was cooked perfectly. We also had a very good diner-style breakfast at the Dixie Cafe. I recommend the sweet potato pancakes.

Charleston, SC - We had a blast on the local pub tour, which hits a variety of bars, from simple neighborhood beer joints to classy upscale wine bars. We also had wonderful dinners at Home Team BBQ (over the river in West Ashley) and especially FIG (oh man, you have to go here, you will NOT regret it. Especially if you eat the tomato tarte tatin). Brunch at Three Little Birds was bland and a little disappointing.

Fayetteville, NC - Had a great quick lunch at Cape Fear Chicken & BBQ. Do not be put off by the fast food-y interior or the drive-through. The chicken is juicy without being greasy at all, and the sides were yummy. Cheap, too. A good stop if you're road-tripping along I-95.

Raleigh, NC - Fabulous dinner at The Pit BBQ - ribs, pulled pork, creamed corn, okra, and ESPECIALLY the hot biscuits and the terrific banana pudding. Make a reservation, it's very popular. We also had a great Southern breakfast at Finch's, complete with biscuits and sausage gravy. This place is cash-only, but it's dirt cheap.

All in all, the trip was a great way to introduce my Jersey-born boyfriend to the wonderful world of Southern cooking :)

What's your culinary secret weapon?

You know, that thing you always keep around in your kitchen that your friends and family either never buy or think is totally weird?

Mine is buttermilk. I use it in everything from bread to curry to cake, and it makes everything so smooth and tasty! And it stays good for a really long time (I mean, what's it going to do, curdle more?). I wonder why more people don't keep it around.

Dialysis-friendly Thanksgiving dinner?

Hi everyone! I know it's only May, but I just found out I have to work the weekend after Thanksgiving. I usually take a long weekend in my hometown (1000 miles from where I live now) with the family, but that won't be possible this year, so I'm lobbying HARD to host Thanksgiving at my place in DC. It would be fun, and a great chance to feed my family in MY style (they know I'm a good cook but have actually eaten very little of my food).

In order to convince the fam to accept this mission, I will have to tailor the menu so that my grandmother, who is on dialysis, can be fully included. Basically, that means limiting potassium, phosphorus, and salt as much as possible - the menu should be free of dairy, salt, nuts, beans, lentils, fish, white potatoes, and chocolate. She also doesn't like anything spicy or too "ethnic." (I usually make Moroccan and Indian food at home, so this is a challenge for me!)

So far I've come up with a roasted bird of some sort (probably goose or a couple of chickens, I don't like turkey), a sweet potato/butternut squash medley, cauliflower puree (instead of mashed potatoes), braised celery or cucumbers a la Julia Child, asparagus, and some sort of fruit-based vegan dessert.

But I'm kind of stuck at this point, and I'd love to hear your ideas. There are so many fruits and veggies I love (beets, Brussel sprouts, bananas) that are off-limits due to their potassium content, so if you cook for someone who is on dialysis, please chime in!

Thanks so much.

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