You did it! Another week down!
We're putting up a post very much like this one every Friday afternoon, to celebrate the fact that the week is done. Down with the lame week days! Up with not-lame weekend days!
We think of this series as something of a send-off for the week, giving you the option of a brief interlude for your Friday afternoon. Of course, if your work week is just starting, or if you're still in the thick of it, think of this as a pick-me-up for your personal hump day, or as a nice way to kick off your weekend shifts.
We hope to provide a short mix of mostly silly, mostly food-related, mostly entertaining things to look at, listen to, and read, and we hope you'll find it amusing, and maybe, sometimes, edifying and enlightening. We also see it as an opportunity to go over some of what's new on the site, which you, dear readers, may have missed.
If you have feedback, or if you run across any interesting/oddball/totally crazy stories/podcasts/images/videos during the week that you think may be appropriate for this little collection of miscellany, email us! We can't guarantee that we'll use it, but we will 100% appreciate the effort.
What's New on Serious Eats
You can, of course, browse all our content in reverse-chronological order. But for you, on this day, some highlights:
- To start the week off, we all came clean about some terrible, no good, really quite bad kitchen failures.
- In part to distract ourselves from the great shame, we published Dayna Crozier's guide to the best breweries in Portland, Oregon, which will no doubt figure heavily in planning any future trips out to the Pacific Northwest.
- Speaking of dream trips: Sasha brought a little memento home from his honeymoon in Europe, and that memento was this recipe for grilling whole turbot. You, too, can get a taste of what it's like to dine at Elkano, which some sparkling-water people say is one of the top 50 restaurants en el mundo.
- Remember when Daniel published a recipe for pulpo gallego, that is, octopus served in the style of Galicia? No? Well, he did, and at the time he recommended using a pressure cooker to get your octopus tender. In the time since, he's tested a variety of methods for getting perfectly cooked octopus, and now you can cook it any way you want: on the stovetop, sous vide, or, yes, of course, in the pressure cooker.
- Caitlin PenzeyMoog stopped by to let you all know all about salt, everyone's favorite food. (Yes, it's a mineral—we know!—but it's also the best food bar none, thanks.)
- Finally, Stella explained why there's there's sometimes that one oddball cookie in some batches, and the steps you can take to avoid making "that weirdo," who may or may not be "someone's favorite crispy boi."
Our Favorite Comments of the Week
Just a small extract from 1,872-word cracker of a comment on our All-American Beef Stew recipe (no joke, it comes with a foreword!):
One day, as I was preparing my beef chuck steaks for the stew, I had an epiphany: What if I used the chimney method to brown my chuck before adding it to the pot? The idea was simply too tempting for me to ignore, and before I knew it I had a chimney started with a full load of hardwood lump coal. If my memory serves me correctly, each steak got approximately three to five minutes over the coals, turning them every 30 seconds to hit each side multiple times until I had the look I was going for. The end result was three beef chuck steaks that all had a dark, almost blackened brown exterior, with singed fat and plenty of wood smokiness coming off them, and most surprisingly, interiors that were only cooked perhaps an eighth of and inch and left completely raw on the inside.
We love you, user Truff91, whoever you are!
*sigh* I had plans to work out tonight and go to bed early. But it looks like I need to make cookies now…
From a commenter (who we are frankly quite worried about) on Facebook, in response to "A Guide to Salt, the World’s Most Popular Food":
TL;DR can y’all just post a meme with the highlights please?
A Brief Book Break
Soon as he ended and before the audience applauded Kerney gestured that it was sherry serving time, unless we were on the coat detail which I wasn't. I fetched my tray, arranged the glasses on it soon as they were filled, and slipped into the smaller reception hall where the guests were milling about. I stayed in my assigned post till my tray emptied then went and loaded up again while Jonathan and one of the other stewards collected the empties, our routine until Kerney's signal to clean up. As I stood there, my mind alternating between the account of the balloon flight and thoughts about souping turtles, which I hated to do, all that shell and tendon and soft flesh, up came young Mr. Robins, with Mr. Linde. I extended them the tray of sherry and Mr. Robins acknowledged it with a half smile, as he said to his friend, "But they have always been unreasonable. It does not take the most careful student in the history of this country, Neddy, to grasp that every foot we have given them has been turned not just into an ell but a tyrant's mile, especially under Buchanan, and it was on the pretext of last fall's campaign, let alone victory, that they began the process of cleaving us in two. I view this mess as the opportunity to discipline them once and for all."
From "The Aeronauts," a novella contained within Counternarratives, by John Keene.
Food Numbers, News, and Hijinks
- 400: number of corporate members that provide the $17 million budget for International Life Sciences Institute, "an American nonprofit...that has been quietly infiltrating government health and nutrition bodies around the world."
- 10,000: "I quit" translated into a number of unsorted coffee beans.
- AD 63: Year food-flinging as a political act was first recorded, "when an angry crowd in Hadrumetum pelted their Roman governor Vespasian with turnips."
- "Hot Girl Summer is over, and hot pot season is back."
- Pizza Hut is doing one of those nutty temporary brand-crossovers for publicity, but this description will live forever: "Marianne Radley, Pizza Hut’s chief brand officer and a self-described Cheez-It fanatic."
- Vegan. Beef. Tartare.
- In a similar, but not funny, vein: The Late Show's take on plant-based burgers.
- Speaking of: If you live in California, you can buy Impossible Burgers at Gelson's. (Which we note only because they won our meat-substitute burger taste-test.)
- Godspeed, Pang!
- Was the first tool a spear, to kill animals for food, or the carrier bag, for gathering food?
Have a wonderful weekend, everybody!
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