We welcomed a handful of new members to our Serious Eats family in 2019, and we've spent this year getting to know each other better. We've gladly helped Sasha taste his way through several iterations of French Onion Soup Tarte Tatin and popped plenty of popcorn to eat while binge-watching all of the new videos on our quickly growing YouTube channel.
As the year (finally!) comes to an end, we're taking a moment to look back on all of the cooking, eating, and discovering that we did in 2019. Soon, we'll be back in the test kitchen, bringing you plenty of new recipes for a new year—but first, a look at the posts you loved the most in 2019.
It turns out most of us had no idea how to dispose of cooking oil. Well, that all changed this year, when Sho wrote an article on properly getting rid of cooking oil, instead of pouring it down the drain, where it turns into a huge, destructive grease monster.
We've always felt very strongly about cookies, and every year we produce a few more recipes to keep our cookie-hungry readers happy. In 2019, we made very, very thin chocolate chip cookies, but we also made these enormous, thick-as-possible ones. If you like your cookies more chewy than crunchy, these ones are for you.
When the internet declared that peanut butter might be the key to absolutely perfect sous vide steak, we had to put the slightly bizarre cooking technique to the test. Our culinary team has standards (a.k.a they refused to cook steaks in peanut butter), so Sho decided to do the test himself. Four months later, most of us still aren't sure how we feel about peanut butter steak.
If you were to look in the Serious Eats test kitchen refrigerators right now, you'd find at least three jars of XO sauce. That's because the sauce lasts for quite some time, and we put it on pretty much everything. Judging by the numbers, it looks like a lot of you do, too.
We're not saying you can't put out a bowl of chips and store-bought salsa when your friends come over. We're just saying you might want to try making this Korean-style fire chicken smothered in a bubbly, crisp layer of cheese instead. If you've been looking to liven up your game-day routine, this'll definitely do the trick.
Fire chicken wasn't the only Korean recipe that got a lot of love this year. When both Stella and Kenji happened to be at Serious Eats HQ during the same week, they collaborated on this kimchi fried chicken sandwich. Kenji's shatteringly crisp fried chicken is layered between two halves of Stella's black sesame buttermilk biscuits, making for a very large, very delicious sandwich.
We took our operation on the road this year, going on a few exciting trips out of the Big City. To learn more about copper cookware (and get a sense for whether the expensive pots are worth owning), Daniel and the video crew drove to an industrial complex in Rhode Island, where an expert pot-maker answered all our questions. We still might not be able to afford a full set of these gorgeous pots, but at least we know if they're worth it.
Most of the time, we keep all our complaining and bickering within these four walls, but every once in a while, we decide to share our grumpy, often-unpopular opinions with you, our beloved readers. From absolutely despising ripe bananas (who knew that was possible!) to turning our noses up at cold brew and popcorn, these are our most popular unpopular grumblings of the year.
We're big fans of easy breakfast, so it should come as no surprise that we developed not one but two pancake recipes this year. Both our light and thin pancakes and our thick and fluffy ones start with a homemade pancake mix, so you don't have to do much more than mix a few ingredients and get cooking.
If you need proof of just how much we love our loyal readers, look no further than this imitation-meat burger taste test. All imitation-meat burgers are not, it turns out, created equal. Our office suffered through some truly unpleasant burgers to find the ones that stood out as convincingly juicy, meaty, and delicious. Consider this taste test our end-of-year gift to you.
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