Joanna Miller

Quick-Pickled Cherry Peppers
We love the stuffed cherry peppers we find in gourmet shops, though at upwards of $10 a jar, they can be a bit pricey. But peppers from the farmers’ market come cheap, and with a simple brine, you can get the same results for much less. All you need is buy some fresh peppers, poke the tops, and make the brine – a mix of white vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper. I first discovered pickled cherry peppers at the Ruby Tuesday salad bar.
Aug 9, 2023
Holiday Baking: What’s Your Favorite Movie to Watch?
Popping in a movie while we’re making cookies is one of our favorite holiday traditions. Maybe it’s even the same cheesy movie every year. Do you have a favorite movie to watch while you’re rolling up dough or decorating cookies?We usually go for something totally seasonal, and OK, maybe a little cheesy. But it’s all part of the fun. Add a mug of hot chocolate – or a festive latte – and you’ve got a pretty perfect afternoon.How about you?
May 13, 2022
Mad Men Menu: Have You Ever Tried Mexican Food?
We’ve made no secret about our serious love for all things “Mad Men,” and we’re sad to see the show’s second season come to an end this Sunday. (Too soon!)Our favorite ad execs and their significant others would no doubt recommend a stiff drink to mark the occasion, but instead, we’re following Don Draper to easy-breezy California for our Mexican-themed finale menu.(Warning: The following contains spoilers from previous episodes. You’ve been warned.
May 12, 2022
Recipe: Spinach and Strawberry Salad Fruit Slinger, Chicago
The Fruit Slinger blog, one of our favorite summertime reads, is back for another season of commentary from the front lines of the Chicago farmers’ markets.But the Fruit Slinger doesn’t just sell the fruit – he knows a thing or two about preparing it, too. Below, he’s shared a salad recipe that highlights our current favorite ingredient: Strawberries!
May 12, 2022
Top Chef Napa Valley: And The Winner Is …
In our poll yesterday, Kevin was the clear favorite, but the general consensus was that it was really anyone’s game. In case you haven’t seen the show, and have managed to avoid learning the winner, we’ll hold our tongue until after the jump. But we suggest you back slowly away from the internet and go watch the episode immediately. Note: We reveal the winner and losers below.
May 11, 2022
Top Chef Las Vegas: The Mini Bocuse d’Or
This week’s episode highlighted the Bocuse d’Or, a culinary competition filled with screaming fans, giant shiny platters and impossibly complex dishes. After getting a glimpse of it, putting together a Thanksgiving meal seems like a breeze.Note: We reveal the winner and losers below.Gavin Kaysen, executive chef at Cafe Boulud and former contestant in the Bocuse d’Or, served as guest judge for the Quickfire.
May 11, 2022
Top Chef All Stars: How NOT to Host a Dinner Party
Top Chef Las Vegas took a break this week, but we got to see a few all stars from past seasons reunite for a dinner party. With fan-favorite Fabio Viviani as the evening’s host, there was plenty of drama for the cameras. Of course, had it been a real dinner party, it would have been a complete disaster.The bright spot of the dinner party? Carla! It may have taken us a while to warm up to her in season 5, but now we can’t get enough.
May 11, 2022
Top Chef Las Vegas: Of Pigs and Pinot
We love a good pairing, so this week’s episode was right up our alley. The challenges featured both high- and low-end combinations, both good and bad.Note: We reveal the winner and losers below …Chef Charlie Palmer was this week’s guest judge and the challenges were all about pairings. For the Quickfire Challenge, the chefs had to create a dish using Alexia Crunchy Snacks.
May 11, 2022
Top Chef Las Vegas: Angels and Devils
There was no shortage of personalities on this week’s episode of Top Chef with guests Penn and Teller and Michelle Bernstein, and the return of judge Toby Young.Note: We reveal the winner and losers below …With the cheftestants’ numbers dwindling, tensions were flaring – as they often do. This week’s episode delivered plenty of cattiness, rolled eyes and bruised egos – oh, and some food too. Here are a few of our thoughts: Someone packed a lot of red scarves.
May 11, 2022
Champurrado: Mexican Hot Chocolate From Nationwide Newspaper Food Sections 10.14.09
Celebrate El Dia de Los Muertos with a cup of rich, creamy Champurrado. Plus, foods for the Hindu new year celebration Diwali, support for sustainable local farms in St. Louis, and a fall vegetable gratin. The Los Angeles Times rounds up recipes for El Dia de Los Muertos including Champurrado, “a rich, creamy drink made from Mexican chocolate, thickened with masa, and spiked with cinnamon.
May 11, 2022
Word of Mouth: Doufeu
Doufeu, noun – A cooking vessel with a concave lid to be filled with ice and promote condensation. French for “gentle heat.”As we get into braising and roasting season, we thought we’d take a look at this particular style of dutch oven. The concave lid is filled with ice to create condensation throughout the cooking process. Dimples on the underside of the lid are designed to distribute the moisture to the food.
May 11, 2022
Liquid Smoke Is a Magical Ingredient for Smoky Flavor Without a Grill
You only need a dash!
Jul 10, 2020
Side Dish Recipe: Greek-Style Lima Beans
A few years ago, our attitude toward Brussels sprouts hadn’t changed since childhood. In other words, we didn’t want anything to do with them. But they’ve enjoyed a bit of a resurgence, to put it mildly Personally, I’ve never had a problem with lima beans and happily ate them as a child, but I seem to be in the minority on this one. They’re not so different from other types of beans, though, with a wonderful buttery texture.
Feb 3, 2020
Recipe: Smoky Deviled Eggs with Greek Yogurt & Frizzled Shallots
If it’s a classic deviled egg you’re looking for, you best keep on moving. There’s no mayonnaise or mustard here, and we haven’t even bothered with any fancy piping. What we do have, though, is one pretty delicious bite. These deviled eggs are made with creamy, tangy Greek yogurt, flavored with smoked paprika and sun-dried tomatoes, and topped with crispy frizzled shallots. Easter in my house isn’t complete without a tray of deviled eggs.
Feb 3, 2020
Recipe: Spiced Oven Fries with Garlic Spread
Fries don’t really come to mind when you think about eating healthy, but these are baked in the oven and served with a light yet creamy garlic dip. Plus, they’re loaded with big flavor from a spice that’s having a moment right now. I recently tried a similar dish at a Lebanese restaurant in Chicago’s Albany Park neighborhood.
Feb 3, 2020
Improvised Recipe: Yogurt Biscuits with Dill
I try to be organized and prepared in the kitchen, but despite my best efforts, I can be a little scattered sometimes. When I hosted an Easter brunch this past weekend, I changed the menu several times during my preparations and ended up forgetting a few ingredients at the store. With my budget spent and time running out, I was determined not to make another trip. Luckily, as I made do, I stumbled upon a great recipe that I can’t wait to make again.
Jan 31, 2020
Recipe: Vegetarian Guinness Stew
This is a last-minute St. Patrick’s Day recipe, but luckily it’s a fairly quick one. File this one under Un-Meat – all the rich, hearty goodness of Guinness stew without the beef. This recipe took a bit of tweaking to get the seasonings right, but I think a small amount of sugar is the key to round out the bitterness of the Guinness. And as with most stews, it’s even better the next day.
Jan 29, 2020
Recipe: Butternut Squash “Winter” Rolls with Spicy Cranberry Sauce
Last week, we mentioned spring rolls as a possible holiday appetizer that can please a wide variety of eaters. But since spring is several cold and snowy months away (at least here in the Midwest), we thought we’d try a more seasonal variation.We adapted this recipe from Recipe Girl’s Butternut Squash and Pumpkin Seed Rice Paper Rolls with Cranberry Chile Dipping Sauce, which was adapted from a recipe in Veganomnicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero.
Jan 29, 2020
Recipe: Brie-Style Mac and Cheese with Mushrooms
Brie-style cheese might not come to mind when you think about macaroni and cheese. We often reach for the sharpest variety when making a batch, but a soft-ripened cheese like Crave Brothers Les Frères is a great, super-creamy alternative. Especially when it’s paired with earthy mushrooms and a little white wine. Think about eating a Brie-style cheese on its own – it’s great with white wine, and its flavor is accentuated by walnuts and mushrooms.
Jan 29, 2020
Recipe: Zucchini, Mint and Yogurt Spread
We get a lot of recipe inspiration from restaurant dishes. One recent meal inspired not only a recipe, but a serving idea, as well. We tried a trio of dips at Chickpea, a Middle Eastern restaurant in Chicago, and the one that really got our attention was a zucchini, mint and yogurt spread called Koosa ma Laban. But we were also quite taken with all the wonderful colors in the restaurant’s decor and serving plates.
Jan 29, 2020
Old-School Tools: Salt & Pepper Sticks from Manly Vintage
This is a bit of a warm weather tease, but we ran across this interesting set of salt and pepper shakers on sticks and couldn’t help sharing it. Has anyone seen something like this before? Can you guess what it’s for?They’re designed for the barbecue! Did you guess right?We came across this interesting seasoning set at the Vintage Bazaar in Chicago last weekend. We were a little puzzled at first, but the seller explained that they are used for grilling. Of course!
Dec 2, 2019
Store Review: Lillstreet Art Center Gallery Store
If you’re one who likes to spend lunch at a cafe, Chicago’s First Slice Cafe is a good choice, especially if you like to end your lunch with a slice of pie (and really, who doesn’t?). Located in the Lillstreet Art Center, the cafe shares a space with the gallery store where you can find one-of-a-kind dishes and serving pieces made by artists who have come through the center.
Jul 30, 2019
Recipe Variation: Edamame Dip
We’re big fans of Mark Bittman and his Minimalist approach to cooking. When he came up with 101 easy picnic recipes, we couldn’t wait to try them out. We used his video recipe for edamame salad with fresh mint, lemon and Pecorino cheese a couple nights ago. Paired with bruschetta and a little herbed goat cheese, it was a perfect light summer meal.We liked the recipe so much, we decided to make it again last night to take to an outdoor concert.
Jun 8, 2019
Holiday Gift Guide: Kitchen Gifts Under $10
Last week, we showed you our favorite kitchen basics under $25. But let’s face it, if you have a lot of people on your holiday shopping list, even that can get a little pricey. So here are 15 more budget-friendly gift ideas – all under $10.Top Row1. Bamboo steamer – Perfect for vegetables, dumplings, bao, tamales … the list goes on. Choose a 10-inch steamer or a 6-inch set of 3 for $9.99 at World Market.2.
Jun 5, 2019
Leftovers in the Morning: Last Night’s Dinner for Breakfast
Most of us like a little breakfast for dinner every once and a while. Some eggs, bacon, maybe even pancakes or waffles – it’s not such a stretch. But how about dinner for breakfast? We don’t usually consider last night’s leftovers as a breakfast possibility (unless it’s pizza) but one of our favorite Twitter feeds has us reconsidering.As you may have guessed, the Tweets we’re referring to are written by Ruth Reichl.
Jun 4, 2019
Eating at the Office: Pack a Lemon in Your Lunch Bag
Sometimes our lunches can start to feel a little gloomy — especially when we’re eating them under fluorescent lights. Lately, we’ve been tossing a lemon into our lunch bags, and it’s helped to brighten up our meals. We’re big on packing lunches that don’t require a lot of prep work at home – it’s hard enough to get out the door in the morning!
Jun 4, 2019
Try This: Salt-Roasted Potatoes
We’ve come across two recipes for salt-roasted potatoes in the past few days – is that enough to call it a trend? Maybe not, but it was enough to pique our interest and give it a try. Get our verdict, and a few tips, below.The February issue of Better Homes & Gardens features a recipe for skillet salt-roasted potatoes. New potatoes are roasted whole on a bed of salt and fennel seeds in a cast iron skillet. And what’s most intriguing – it’s all done on the stove top.
Jun 4, 2019
Catering Your Own Wedding: A Step-by-Step GuideForkable
Here at The Kitchn, we’re big fans of incorporating homemade food into wedding celebrations, and some of us have first-hand experience doing that to different degrees. But we were blown away by Forkable’s Andrea, who catered an entire meal for 150+ people on a budget of under $1500, for her own wedding!Her solution? A gourmet sandwich buffet.
Jun 4, 2019
Recipe: Tortellini and Spring Vegetable Salad
Last summer, we talked about Slate’s 12 steps to better pasta salad But step No. 3? “Avoid tortellini.” Well, we think we found an exception to that rule. We can see how tortellini could be a bad choice for a pasta salad. Something meat-filled might be too heavy, and dried tortellini with reconstituted fillings could bring a bad flavor. But fresh tortellini with a light cheese and herb filling? We think that’s just fine.
Jun 4, 2019
Super Bowl Parties: Taco Bar
Are you hosting a Super Bowl party this weekend? We are, and we’re putting together one of our favorite meals that’s easy to prepare and pleases meat-eaters, vegetarians and vegans alike.We were pouring over Super Bowl ideas, trying to find something for everyone, when a Martha Stewart recipe reminded us of one of our favorite crowd-pleasing spreads: a taco bar. Of course!
Jun 4, 2019
Good Product: In Praise of Better Than Bouillon
This little jar is a constant presence in our refrigerator and has become indispensable when making vegetarian meals.If we had the time, we’d always make our own vegetable stock, but more often than not, we just don’t. Which is why we’re never without our trusty jar of Superior Touch Better Than Bouillon vegetable base.With a paste-like consistency, the base works much like a bouillon cube, but you can measure out as much or as little as you’d like.
Jun 4, 2019
Stress-Free Weekend Cooking: Muhammara
Earlier this week, we mentioned our newfound love of muhammaraOriginated in Syria, muhammara is a great addition to our usual rotation of hummus, tzatziki and baba ghanoush – particularly when friends stop by – and its bright color and flavors make it a standout. It also has great versatility. Eat it with pita, crudité, grilled meats or vegetables, on a sandwich – the possibilities are endless.And it couldn’t be simpler to make.
Jun 4, 2019
Back to School Recipe: Peanut Butter and Fruit “Sushi”
We’re not usually big on gimmicky recipes, but the beginning of another school year put us in the mood to make something fun for lunch boxes, even if our own school days are long behind us.We’ve seen a few peanut butter and jelly “sushi” recipes, but they are usually more like thin wraps, and we wanted to make something with a little more structure.
Jun 3, 2019
Recipe: Zucchini and Asparagus Strata
I’m ready to hit the Chicago farmers markets this week and stock up on all the super-fresh local produce I’ve been craving since last fall. I’ll most likely bring home as much as I can carry, and then I’ll be faced with the happy task of finding ways to prepare and eat it. This is one recipe I know we’ll be turning to, especially because it can be so easily adapted to use whatever ingredients look best.
May 3, 2019
Chicago Ingredient Spotlight: Peppadew Peppers at Provenance Food and Wine
Peppadew peppers have become one of our go-to appetizer components. Honestly, our relationship with these sweet, tangy and slightly spicy peppers borders on addiction, and they’re pretty much guaranteed to impress any guests.Peppadews are great on their own, but find out how to make them really sing…Peppadew is actually a brand name for sweet piquanté peppers grown in South Africa.
May 3, 2019
2-in-1 Recipe Review: Wine-Marinated Grapes and Sweet Wine Refresher
When we came across a decade-old Bon Appétit recipe for Wine-Marinated Grapes, we were intrigued. But when we learned the recipe would yield a ready-made cocktail as well, we simply couldn’t resist.A big bowl of cool, slightly boozy grapes is exactly what we’re craving this hot and steamy weekend.The grapes marinate for at least three hours (up to a day) in a mixture of dry white wine, sugar and lemon zest, and then they’re ready to go.
May 3, 2019