Megan Gordon's Recent Articles
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Look! Gin and Tonic Cake
I can be a bit of a dessert purist, often reaching for fresh fruit desserts or good, dark chocolate rather than an over-the-top confection. But when I hear the words gin icing and gin glaze in connection with a warm lemon-lime cake, things change pretty quickly.
May 9, 2012
Soda Fountain Recipe: Banana Cream Pie Milkshake
Something happens when you’re sick for many days. You lose your appetite, you watch a few bad movies, you entertain thoughts that you may never be well again. And then one morning, like magic, you wake up and have an appetite. The first thing that sounds delicious: a banana milkshake! This is a true story.
May 2, 2012
Ruth Reichl’s Secret to a Sexy PB&J
When I read the headline to Ruth Reichl’s piece on Gilt Taste earlier this week, I chuckled: How to Make a Better Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. What could there possibly be to learn that we don’t know already?Now I should take a step back and mention that when I used to teach high school English, one of the assignments I’d give my students was to write detailed instructions on a task that seemed easy or mundane.
Apr 27, 2012
Market Recipe: Spring Quiche with Leeks and Sorrel
The days when you allow the farmers market to dictate what you make for dinner are kind of awesome days. To be quite honest, they’ve become rarer and rarer around our house as we’ve become busier during the weekends. But there’s something quite sweet about ambling around the market and chatting about what you could make with certain ingredients. This weekend, we had time to visit our local farmers market and found some beautiful looking sorrel, leeks, and farm eggs.
Apr 25, 2012
Beyond Hummus: 5 Deliciously Creamy Bean Dip Recipes
For anyone who’s made your own hummus, you know how easy it is. And if you’re like me, you feel silly for not having done it earlier, and excited by all of the ways to customize the dip to your liking. (More garlic and red chile flakes, please!) The nice thing about bean dips is the simplicity: for the most part, you throw a handful of ingredients in a food processor and call it a day.Sometimes when you’re rushing around preparing for a party, that alone can feel like a lot.
Apr 16, 2012
5 Tips to Help You Make Better Granola
I eat Greek yogurt and granola for breakfast most days of the week. I started perfecting granola at home when I got tired of buying dry, tasteless, over-priced granola at the store. Now I make it weekly, and have some tips and tricks so you, too, can avoid disappointing granola.
Mar 28, 2012
Baker’s Tip: What to do With Leftover Buttercream?
I hate kitchen waste. I’m the girl who will eat the same thing for dinner three nights in a row to avoid having to throw it out. So you can imagine how much I dislike throwing out half a bowl of frosting that remains after a recipe. Now a simple cream cheese frosting is bad enough, but a more complex buttercream seems even worse. Time, effort, and endless whisking went into the latter and to simply toss it breaks my heart.
Mar 27, 2012
The Perfect Cheesecake: 5 Tips and Tricks
It happens all the time. You pick out the perfect cheesecake recipe, stock up on pricey ingredients, spend a few hours in the kitchen, and come out with a disappointing cheesecake. There are a few major reasons why cheesecakes often flop, so we thought we’d take a moment to cover them during dessert week here on The Kitchn. The thing about cheesecakes is they’re so much better when made at home, but folks are often scared of them.
Mar 26, 2012
A Snack-Heavy Gathering: 10 Simple, Satisfying Recipes
We had a housewarming party last weekend, and decided to start the party at 8 p.m. Lots of drinks were on the menu, and you know what happens when folks stay late and drink: they want to eat. So while we weren’t serving dinner, we knew we’d need to have a bunch of heavier snacks to sustain everyone through the night.Surprisingly, we had far more fun planning the food for this snack-heavy party than we have with many of our smaller dinner parties.
Mar 23, 2012
Pi Day Recipe: Chocolate Stout Pudding Pie
Pie It Forward by Gesine Bullock-Prado is a pretty, educational, and thorough collection of pie recipes and baking tips. Bullock-Prado owns the Vermont Pastry shop Gesine Confectionary and felt it was time to write a solid, complete pie book using many of the recipes she’s become known for in the shop.Now I bake a lot of pies, and I have to admit that I was struck by how much I learned after just a few minutes flipping through Pie It Forward.
Mar 14, 2012
Avoid Soggy Quinoa: Helpful Tips from Bon Appetit
It’s happened to many of us, myself included. You’re looking for a quick weeknight meal, so you roast some veggies and put a pot of quinoa on the stove. The result? A mushy, soggy, uninspired dinner. Last week on the Bon Appetit blog, they discussed the best way to cook quinoa and why it can often get soggy. No surprise: it’s user error, and there are a few quick tips to make sure it never happens again. 1) Cook Smart: First things first: don’t overcook your quinoa!
Feb 27, 2012
My Favorite Baking Tool: The French Rolling Pin
Choosing my favorite baking tool was a difficult challenge. I thought first about the things that I use often like my favorite zester or my Silpat. Then I thought about things with emotional significance like my grandmother’s cookie cutters or my mom’s old sheet trays. But when it comes right down to it, there’s only one favorite. And for me it’s the tool that I find both useful, practical, and beautiful. My french rolling pin is a true champion.
Feb 14, 2012
How to Make Your Own Flavored Coffee
When I think of flavored coffee, I think of road trips and gas stations. College cafeterias and airports. Don’t get me wrong: I’m a hazelnut coffee gal, through and through. But it’s not an everyday thing for me although it could be more and more now that I know how to make my own.In the February issue of Martha Stewart Magazine, there is a little piece on making flavored coffee at home the easy way. The gist?
Jan 19, 2012
Recipe: Hazelnut Cherry Muesli
I’ve discovered muesli. If you’re not familiar with muesli, it contains many of the same ingredients as granola, but instead of adding sweeteners and oil, you toast the ingredients as they are. No oil. Only as much honey or maple syrup as you’d like to serve it with. It’s certainly drier than granola and won’t have that characteristic clumping or crunch that some people love.
Jan 13, 2012
Cardamom Pods: Which Color to Choose?
There’s a new spice shop that just opened in my Oakland neighborhood, and from the moment I walked in I was intrigued. I’d never encountered so many different varieties of one single spice or herb. When it came time to choose cardamom, I was stumped: which color pod was the most fragrant or flavorful? Cardamom pods come in three colors: black, green and white. It turns out that each color has a distinct personality, flavor-wise.
Jan 5, 2012
Red Wine Tip: Aerate Inexpensive Red Wine in a Blender
When you open a bottle of red wine, it often needs a little time to open up and breathe. This can take anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours, but what if you simply don’t have that long? Perhaps you forget to open it and then find the wine is too tight, or you have a guest drop by and want to pour out the wine right away? Well, an unexpected kitchen tool can help you out.First, why aerate your wine in the first place?
Jan 4, 2012
The Great Stuffing Debate: Pepperidge Farm vs. All the Rest
Sometimes, you’ve got to let things go. For instance, if you’re set on convincing your family that homemade stuffing can rock way more than anything in a bag: let it go. If you have a competition with said family and a blind taste test and you end up losing: it’s time to let it go. If you keep coming back thinking this could be the year it all changes, it’s really time to let it go.
Nov 22, 2011
Recipe: Double-Garlic Herb Garlic Bread
Some days you just have to go all out. Maybe you have soft cheeses and crackers before dinner, open a bottle of good wine, make spaghetti and meatballs and then decide that garlic bread is also important. When you can’t stop thinking about garlic bread, this is the recipe for you.There are two important things to remember when making garlic bread. First, use a good baguette that you like. I’m not a fan of using squishy white sandwich bread.
Oct 14, 2011
Why are Pine Nuts So Expensive?
Recently I made a trip to the store to pick up some pine nuts for a pesto linguine recipe. I left noticeably poorer. After scanning my receipt to see where I’d gone wrong, I noticed that it was the pine nuts. I could’ve bought a gallon of pesto for what I paid for pine nuts that day. So why are they so darn expensive? There are a few reasons. First there the obvious climate changes that are affecting crops worldwide.
Sep 13, 2011
5 Great Canning Websites
While we’ve just seen Labor Day come and go, the opportunity to can and preserve a little piece of summer is far from expired.September is actually my favorite time of year to can and preserve tomatoes, and my mom and I have a caning date set for next week: a whole day devoted to making jam and canning tomato sauce. But inevitably, no matter how often you preserve at home, questions arise and it’s nice to know a few great resources you can always rely on.
Sep 7, 2011
Recipe: Simple Summer Squash Soup
I realize that much of the country is experiencing a heat wave right now and the last thing you want to do is spend a great deal of time in your kitchen. But I also realize that summer squash and zucchinis are running rampant and it’s tough to think of creative ways to use them before you can give them all away or they start to go bad on your counter-top. So here’s a quick, oven’s-only-on-for-twenty-minutes soup that you’ll appreciate having around for a few days.
Jul 26, 2011
Recipe: Braised Eggplant and Tomatoes
Eggplant can get a bad rap. Some people find it mushy while others may find it stringy or even tasteless. But if it’s prepared well, eggplant can be an extremely satisfying meat substitute and, when joined with a few tomatoes and fresh herbs, the perfect summer meal. I like this recipe a lot because it doesn’t try and dress up the eggplant with too much oil or gobs of cheese.
Jul 19, 2011
Homemade Nutter Butters
Right around this time every year, I start thinking of recipes I can make for my extended family when we’re all together over the July 4th holiday. Pies are always a given; cookies are always a must. So this year, I thought it would be fun to bake up some nostalgic favorites that the adults would fondly remember and the kids would just love because, hey, it’s a sandwich cookie.So where did I turn? Brandi Henderson’s lovely blog: I Made That.
Jun 14, 2011
5 Steps to Master Perfect Pie Crust
There are certain things that people tend to shy away from in the kitchen. Pie dough from scratch is often one of them. For many, it all just seems so mysterious&mdash how to achieve that perfect flakiness? Well, here are 5 tips to help you master that perfect no-fail pie crust. After I started my baking business, Marge, pie became a major focus of my day-to-day life.
Apr 28, 2011
Recipe: Goat Cheese and Swiss Chard Pasta Casserole
This past weekend in San Francisco, the weather forecast was a bold one. Each news station insisted snow was on its way. People dug out their winter coats. Kids prepared for snow-man marathons. And I made a very fine casserole&mdash one with healthy whole-wheat pasta, Swiss chard, and goat cheese. It was definitely a casserole occasion as it hasn’t snowed in San Francisco since the 1970’s.
Mar 2, 2011
Molly Wizenberg’s Curried Lentil Soup
After the sugar-rush that is the holidays, I always find myself turning to substantial salads and homey soups for a change. And today I’m thrilled to share with you a recent favorite I’ve added to my arsenal of “best ever” soup recipes.This past fall, Emma posted a recipe review from the blog Orangette written by Molly Wizenberg. The recipe was for a Red Lentil Soup with Lemon, and boy it’s a stunner.
Jan 6, 2011
Boozy Parisian Desserts: Sweets With Pastis
We’re celebrating French WeekIf you’re not familiar with pastis, it’s a liquor immensely popular in Southern France comprised of star anise, peppercorns, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, licorice and a bit of sugar. Many people drink pastis for its incredible thirst-quenching properties and there are lengthy debates regarding the best way to serve it. We especially love the liquor because it’s celebrated as a national aperitif and before-meal drink.
Sep 28, 2010