Whether or not you cook French food, the classic quatre épices ("four spices") is an excellent blend to have in your repertoire. As we head into colder weather, try using this rich, savory seasoning with gingerbread, stews, charcuterie, and more.
Grade B, Grade A... have you ever been confused by maple syrup labeling? Grade "A" sounds like a higher-quality product but this is misleading; personally, I prefer Grade B, which is just as pure but darker and more robust in flavor.
Well, things are about to get less confusing. Vermont is changing their maple syrup labeling, so say goodbye to Grade B.
Grits don’t need me to wax poetic about them. People already do that. A lot. Chefs dress them up real pretty and escort them ‘round the dining room with heritage pigs and heirloom whatever-the-garden-trends and call them a revelation in a way I reckon makes seasoned Southern cooks roll their eyes and scoff a little. Haven’t they been saying so all along? Grits have history the furthest thing from fancy, but from then til haute cuisine, they sure do make a meal.
Ice cream is the perfect dessert for busy hosts and there are so many ways to fancy up a simple scoop. Here's a tasty, seasonal idea that would work for an autumn dinner party, or even as a Thanksgiving dessert: serve scoops of pumpkin ice cream in no-bake gingersnap cups!
Every Halloween, I cook a big pot of pumpkin chili and put a bunch of easy appetizers on the table. Most of them are simple and healthy, to counteract the candy: chips and salsa, carrots and a bowl of ranch dressing, maybe a bowl of grapes. We usually have cornbread, either homemade or from Lizard's Thicket, a local meat-and-three. This year, I may experiment with an all pumpkin menu.
I first discovered Wiener Schnitzel as a little girl eating "around the world" at Disney's Epcot Center, and those two words still make me giggle. Funny name aside, it's a classic dish that's easy to prepare.
Spooky treats for Halloween are here in full force, but usually I don't contribute much to this particular holiday. I'm always a little thrown off by ghoulish treats, although I admire the ingenuity that goes into creating meatloaf hands, marshmallow spiders, and chocolatey witches' hats.
But this year I had a new favorite recipe in mind — and I realized it would make the perfect Halloween gross-out dessert, one that looked goofy but actually tasted delicious. Meet chia pudding — your best friend when it comes to Halloween treats.
Perhaps one of the more interesting, creative and exciting things about being a cook is when one thing leads to another and before you know it, almost by accident, you have created something really delicious. Something out of nothing, or nearly nothing. It can begin with an idea, of course, a whispered question in the back of your head (I wonder if… ? Or how would it taste if…?)
Or sometimes it's that an unexpected ingredient has landed in your lap, which is exactly what happened to me yesterday when I ran next door to deliver something to my neighbor and she showed me the magical secret of her autumnal porch decoration.
I have a few friends who have visited New Orleans in the past two weeks, so the Sazerac has been on my radar. I've heard about the best place to enjoy one, the very finest ingredients to use, the bartenders who know what they're really doing. So last night we decided to mix them up at home instead, and upon first sip something seemed a little off: they didn't taste as great as if we'd ordered them out. Quickly my partner Sam realized why: the sugar! We're missing the sugar!
There are three oils I use regularly in my kitchen, the ones I will replace as soon as the bottle is empty, even if I don't need them right that second. Two for flavor, and one for its lack of flavor and high smoke point.