Dish Types In Skills
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Is There an Alternative to Canned Cream Soups? Good Questions
Q: I’m looking for an alternative to “canned cream of whatever” soup to use in slow cooker recipes. I saw a recipe recently for a chicken and wild rice dish (not soup) made in the slow cooker. However, this recipe called for a can of condensed soup to make the gravy.Can you recommend an alternative ingredient for the canned soup?Sent by CarrieEditor: Carrie, absolutely! In fact, it’s very easy to make your own substitute to canned, condensed, cream soups.
Nov 3, 2009
Favorite Product: PG Tips Tea
It started with an innocent impulse buy several years ago in a cheese shop in San Francisco. A square cardboard box with a lady in an orange sari on the cover and the intriguing promise of unique, triangular tea bags within. Now it’s an everyday ritual almost impossible to skip: wake up, boil water, PG tips, milk, back under the covers with a steaming cuppa and 15 minutes of slow sipping and emerging into the day.
Oct 19, 2009
Soft and Pretty: Eggs en Cocotte
For such an elegant little dish, eggs en cocotte are remarkably simple to make. We can even do it half-awake on a Saturday morning while we’re waiting for the coffee to brew. Oh, and then the absolute luxury of dipping that first piece of buttered toast into the warm yolk. Yes, we’ll be making these eggs this weekend. What about you?This dish is sometimes called baked eggs or shirred eggs, but all the recipes are generally the same.
Oct 16, 2009
Marina’s Chile Relleno with Pecan Cream Sauce Quick Weeknight Meals Recipe Contest 2009
Recipe: Chile Relleno with Pecan Cream SauceCategory: OmnivoreHow long does it take? 45 minutesName: MarinaWhy is it a favorite meal? This is more of an impromptu dinner party dish. It looks like it should’ve taken all day to make but it’s surprisingly quick!Chile Relleno with Pecan Cream SauceThis is an easier spin on a traditional Mexican dish, Chiles en Nogada. With the lean bison and quinoa it’s a healthy, well-rounded dinner.
Sep 27, 2009
Kitty’s Bocconcino and Sausage Pasta Quick Weeknight Meals Recipe Contest 2009
Recipe: Bocconcino and Sausage PastaHow long does it take? 20-25 minutesCategory: OmnivoreName: KittyWhy is it a favorite meal? This dish always comforts me. Most of the ingredients are almost always either in my pantry or fridge. I just have to cruise by the store for sausage and bocconcino. The flavors are distinct and the cinnamon adds great depth to the dish.
Sep 27, 2009
What is Ponzu?
If you like cooking Asian food at home, then you should have a bottle of ponzu in your cupboard. It is an essential condiment and marinade with a wonderful, zingy flavor that pairs well with vegetables, seafood, and meats. Sadly, it’s very little-known outside of Japan and it deserves more widespread knowledge.Ponzu is a citrus-based sauce used in Japanese cuisine as a marinade or an addition to soy sauce. It is made with rice wine, rice vinegar, bonito fish flakes, and seaweed.
Sep 24, 2009
Jessica’s “Planned” Leftover Burritos Quick Weeknight Meals Recipe Contest 2009
Recipe: “Planned” Leftover BurritosHow long does it take? 10 min prep, 20 min cookCategory: OmnivoreName: JessicaWhy is it a favorite meal? I can change it based on my mood, what I have on hand, and who is eating it.“Planned” Leftover BurritosThis is a “planned” leftover burrito because I usually have some sort of meat – roasted chicken, steak, fish, etc. – that I need to have a way to finish off, so I build it into my planning.
Sep 22, 2009
Heather’s Ribbons with Eggplant, Tomato & Blue Cheese Quick Weeknight Meals Recipe Contest 2009
Name: HeatherRecipe: Little Ribbons with Eggplant, Tomato and Blue CheeseHow long does it take? 30 minutesWhy is it a favorite meal? It’s a terrific way to use some of your late summer bounty! Simple, inexpensive, satisfying and ridiculously delicious!Little Ribbons with Eggplant, Tomato and Blue Cheese[serves 2]1/2 large eggplant, cut into 3/4?
Sep 11, 2009
Small Bite Meals From Around The World
I just love eating a meal with friends that is a collection of small dishes making up one big entree. Whether it’s washing down izakaya with a cold Asahi, nibbling on tapas with some sangria, or enjoying a morning of dim sum and hot tea, I find them all very satisfying. I started thinking about how various cultures in the world have their own way of combining small bites into a meal, so I made up a comprehensive list.Let me know if I missed any!
Sep 3, 2009
College Eating: How To Make Better Microwave Popcorn
Microwave popcorn is a college dorm staple – when your kitchen is limited to a microwave and a mini fridge, what choice do you have? But did you know there’s a way to make it that’s healthier, tastier and much, much cheaper? Here’s what you need: popcorn kernels and a paper bag. That’s it. Fill the bag with about 1/4 cup of kernels, fold the top of the bag over a couple of times and microwave on high for about 2 minutes.
Aug 25, 2009
Honey Moon Summer Ale from Blue Moon Brewing Co. Beer Sessions
A few of you recommended this beer in our round-up of favorite summer beers a few weeks back. With its promise of honey and orange, Honey Moon Summer Ale definitely sounded like the perfect companion to a lazy afternoon of sun and summer reading. And that’s exactly what we did! Have you tried this beer?Beer Details: Honey Moon Summer Ale from Blue Moon Brewing Company, $7.00 for 6 12-ounce bottles and available May through mid-August. (5.
Aug 11, 2009
Weekend Project: Make a Pavlova!
Pavlovas can be tricky to make when it’s hot and humid outside, but they are such a good dessert to serve with fresh summer fruit that it’s worth the effort! They’re light and airy, sweet without being too sweet, and sure to please both kids and adults. Shall we give it a try this weekend?What is a Pavlova?The pavlova is named after Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova and the original recipe hails from either Australia or New Zealand (we won’t get into that debate!).
Jul 31, 2009
Tip: Turn Leftover Soup into a Dip
This wouldn’t work for every soup in the book, but there are certain ones that could be easily thickened up and recycled, in a way, as a dip. Don’t believe us? We’ve actually thought it through…We made a gazpacho yesterday. It was a white “gazpacho,” made with cauliflower, cucumber, and almonds, and after we finished eating, our lunch companion looked at the large container of leftovers and said, “I wonder if I could serve this as a dip.
Jul 30, 2009
Buckler: Our Favorite Non-Alcoholic Beer (So Far)
We have a particular reason for craving non-alcoholic beer right now, and this has emerged as a recent favorite…See, I’m pregnant. And I love beer. More than wine, slightly less than gin gimlets, and on par with margaritas. I miss all of those things right now (hot weather is even more cruel when you can’t cool off with a cocktail), but fruity concoctions like basil lemonade tide me over pretty well. Most of the time.But on certain afternoons (or, hey, mornings!
Jul 23, 2009
Food Science: Why Salad Greens Wilt
On a hot summer evening, a big leafy salad for dinner sounds just about perfect. That is, until the greens start to wilt and the dressing gets all watery. We always figured this phenomenon had something to do with the liquid in the salad dressing, but it turns out the culprit is a different ingredient!In his book, How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, Mark Bittman explains some of the science behind wilting greens.
Jul 21, 2009
Food Science: Why Carbonated Soda Explodes When Shaken
As kids, we always thought it was a pretty funny joke to shake up a bottle of soda and leave it for the next unsuspecting person. Our sense of humor has improved since then, happily – and we’ve gotten a lot more curious! Why does shaking fizzy drinks make them even fizzier? And more importantly, once shaken, how can we avoid getting a shower?Carbonated drinks are made by forcing carbon gas into a beverage under pressure.
Jul 14, 2009
2 Tips for Making Great Pizza at Home From Brandon & Molly of Delancey
We are planning on making pizza this weekend, and so we are excited to follow these two tips offered by Molly and Brandon in this video. You may know Molly Wizenberg as the author of the popular food blog Orangette. Her husband, Brandon, has a passion for pizza, and so they decided to open a pizza restaurant in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle.
Jul 10, 2009
Weekend Project: Make Gnocchi
What Are Gnocchi? While there are actually several different kinds of gnocchi (and we talked about some of them a few weeks ago), today we’ll just focus on potato gnocchi. This is a half-pasta, half-dumpling that hails from the northern part of Italy. As you can probably guess from the name, they’re made from cooked potatoes that get mashed, mixed with egg and flour, and kneaded into a dough.
Jul 10, 2009
Food Science: Why Bread Crusts Crack
Far from being a bad thing, hairline cracks like those in the photo above are the sign of a fantastic, shatteringly-crisp crust. We’ve heard that this is something to which many bakers actually aspire! Here’s how it happens:From what we’ve gathered from our various bread books, a crunchy crust on your loaf of bread is the result of moisture and high heat during baking.
Jun 16, 2009
Word of Mouth: Bannock
Bannock, noun: A flat bread, popular in Canada and the northern United States, often made of oatmeal, barley flour or corn meal.We’re all about cooking and eating outdoors this month, so we perked up when we saw this rustic bread being prepared on an episode of Bobby Flay’s Grill It! It was, of course, baked right on the grill.According to the British Columbia Ministry of Forests and Range, Bannock was a staple in the diets of nearly all of North America’s first peoples.
Jun 10, 2009
Stop! Don’t Re-Roll Your Scraps!
Every food guru on the planet tell us that re-rerolling our scraps of dough, be it cookies, pie crusts or biscuits, won’t make for the prettiest goods. Although we all know it’s true, we usually try to weasel out a few more usable pieces. Instead of ending up with those few odd shaped outcasts, try this easy tip that will further another meal down the road…It’s a simple fact that cutting circles from square pieces of dough leaves left over bits and pieces.
Jun 8, 2009
Good Question: Do I Need a Tomato Press?
Here’s a great gadget question from Tiffany. Dear Kitchn, I am dying to try this Williams-Sonoma recipe for Roasted Tomato Soup. It calls for a tomato press, though. What is that? Do I need one? (Please say no!) How can I achieve the same effect with basic kitchen utensils and a blender? Thanks!
May 12, 2009
Good Question: Vinegar Alternative for Salad Dressings?
Here’s a good question from Brian about salad dressings. He says: I am wondering about salad dressings. I love salads but I am struggling at making homemade salad dressings. It might be because i’m not a big vinegar fan. For some reason I don’t like the taste. What do you suggest for a healthier alternative to vinegar salad dressings? Brian, this subject is near and dear to our hearts.
Mar 25, 2009
Quick Tip: Use Tea Balls To Flavor Soup
Do you use a bouquet garni to flavor your soups? If so, try tucking them into a tea ball instead of cheesecloth.We came across this idea at Williams Sonoma – it’s so simple and obvious, but we’d never thought to try it. Cheesecloth and muslin bags are great, but this is a good alternative. Plus, it’s reusable.We found a few other tea infusers that could work well with spices too, including a couple of heart-shaped versions. A little cheesy, sure.
Feb 11, 2009
Food Science: Why Some Batters Need to Rest
Many recipes for batter foods like crêpes and our very own Big Pancakes say to let the mixture rest briefly before proceeding to cooking. This may seem like a strange step, but there’s more going on during that rest than meets the eye…During the resting period, starch molecules in the flour are absorbing the liquid in the batter. This causes them to swell and gives the batter a thicker, more viscous consistency.
Feb 10, 2009
Cooking by Imagination… Or, How I Turned An Appetizer Into Dessert
The recipe seemed to just appear in my head one evening a few months ago. I was visiting some friends and we were hanging around in the kitchen, doing what we love most: a little chopping here, a little sautéing there until something that might be called dinner ends up on the table. Someone showed up with a bag full of ripe pears and before I knew it, I was pulling a caramelized pear tart from the oven.But really, I didn’t do this alone. Read on for how it all came together.
Jan 21, 2009
How To Make Whipped Chocolate Ganache
A chocolate ganache is just chocolate melted and beaten into heavy cream. It’s a magic substance; it can be a glaze, a filling, a coating, a solid truffle — it just depends on the ratio of cream to chocolate. I like a ratio of a bit more cream to chocolate for a whipped filling; this ensures that it doesn’t get too hard and difficult to spread.
Dec 9, 2008
New Favorite Indulgence: Pear Brandy
Many months ago, we bought a bottle of pear brandy to make a pear clafouti, which turned out to be a disappointment (unlike this berry one, which Faith highly recommends). The brandy sat in a cupboard, forgotten, until we pulled it out to make a version of Nora’s Thanksgiving Poinsettia cocktail.
Dec 1, 2008
Baker’s Techniques: How to do the Windowpane Test when Kneading Bread
The windowpane test is one of the best ways to tell if you’ve sufficiently kneaded your bread dough, though it can sound like a pretty bizarre instruction when you come across it in a recipe! Here’s what you do…First, cut off a small piece of the dough about the size of a golf ball.
Dec 1, 2008
Quick Tip: Flavor Soups with Cheese Rinds
We go through a healthy amount of Parmesan and Pecorino cheese in our house, and we used to just throw the rind away. This was until we discovered this trick used by chefs and Italian grandmothers for centuries!When your soup or sauce is ready to simmer, throw in an old cheese rind. The rind will soften and the flavors of the cheese will infuse throughout the dish.
Nov 10, 2008
Good Question: When Is It Too Hot For Soup?
Here’s a question from reader Bruce. He asks:I’m inviting some folks over for dinner on Sunday and was thinking about making tortilla soup. The forecast is a high in the mid-70s, probably upper 60s-70 by dinner time. Do you think that’s cool enough weather for warm soup?Read on for our thoughts, a survey, and the recipe for that delicious tortilla soup above.Is it ever too hot for soup?
Oct 15, 2008
Cultural Differences: Salad Before or After Dinner?
Americans have their salads right off the bat, prelude to the main event. At the very least, salad is served alongside the main course. In Europe, however, salad is often served after dinner. It’s considered a cleansing finish before cheese or dessert. We know two people (both Americans) who do this, and they have different reasons why…One is a Francophile who is adept in many things European when it comes to dining.
Oct 2, 2008
Word of Mouth: Sabayon
Sabayon, noun (sah-bye-on): A sweet dessert sauce made of egg yolks, sugar, and Marsala. More details and a recipe after the jump!This custard sauce has Italian origins, but was long ago adopted into classical French cuisine. You might also see it called “zabaglione” or “zabayon” in recipes and on menus.Foamy and creamy, sabayon is lighter and (typically) less sweet than milk-based creme anglaise.
Sep 9, 2008
Do You Know This Beer? Whale’s Tale Ale from Nantucket
It’s so nice to discover a local food or drink while on vacation; it’s like the souvenir that keeps on giving. A lot of people go to Napa and find a new wine. We went to Nantucket and found beer…Whale’s Tale is a delicious, crisp, slightly sweet amber ale from the Cisco Brewers, right on Nantucket Island. It’s a small brewery that produces a bunch of good beers — several of which we drank when we visited Cisco and did a tasting.
Jul 31, 2008
Good Question: How Can I Make Creamier Ice Cream?
It’s just barely spring, but already our thoughts are turning to ice cream. This reader too – does anyone have any advice for Jessica?Whenever I make ice custard or cream (with or without eggs) the dessert turns out icy instead of creamy, no matter the recipe. I have an ice cream maker that uses a bowl one puts in the freezer and try to use full fat dairy products. Any tips?
Apr 14, 2008
Quick Tip: How to Fix a Broken Sauce
Sometimes a sauce will break no matter how attentive you are to its whims and needs. (See our post here with the most common reasons why emulsified sauces break.) It’s frustrating and discouraging, especially if guests are at the table and waiting for your finishing touch.But never fear! You can still pull off a fantastic sauce without missing a beat.If your sauce is just starting to break, little droplets of fat will start to form around the edges of the bowl.
Mar 27, 2008
Word of Mouth: Mother Sauce
Mother Sauce (French: sauce mere): The mother sauces were established by 19th century chef Antonin Careme as the foundations upon which all other sauces are built. There are five different mother sauces: Hollandaise, Mayonnaise, Bechamel, Veloute, and Espagnol.And with emulsions on the brain, you guessed it–each sauce relies on some kind of emulsion to hold it together.You’re probably most familiar with hollandaise and mayo.
Mar 26, 2008
Food Science: Why Did My Sauce Break?
It’s your average weekend morning. You’re making some hollandaise, whisking away and looking forward to a delicious velvety sauce to serve with your brunch. And then it happens. You look down and somehow, without knowing when, your sauce has broken.A broken sauce is a such a sad sight. Instead of a thick cream, suddenly you have grainy bits of fat floating in a bowl of watery liquid. Not very appetizing! So what happened?
Mar 25, 2008
Simple Pleasures: Ricotta with Honey and Fruit
On the morning of Easter Sunday, there won’t be any slaving over a hot stove. There’ll be no worrying about whether the eggs will poach properly, or how to have half-a-dozen omelets hot at once. Instead, there’ll be a room full of happy people, dipping their spoons again and again into rich bowls of creamy, smooth, nourishing ricotta, made slightly sweeter with a drizzle of wildflower honey, and some beautifully plump dried fruit.
Mar 19, 2008
Word of Mouth: Moreish
Moreish adj. Addictive or nearly addictive; most often used to describe food or drink so good that you want more (primarily British and Australian in usage).We are big fans of Agatha Christie; her books are unfailingly entertaining and satisfying, the perfect bedtime reading.
Mar 3, 2008
Good Question: How to Make the Perfect Cafe au Lait?
All the coffe coverage has Cortney thinking about perfect cafe au lait…Any tips on how to make the perfect cafe au lait? Whether it was in Paris, Bilbao or Madrid, the ones I had in Europe were so far superior to any I have been able to find in the US. I’d like to know how to make my own! – Cortney(To All Good Questions)Cortney, this a hard one for us because we are not completely sure what makes a perfect cafe au lait.
Feb 7, 2008
Good Question: Can I Replace Espresso Powder With Espresso?
All of the (wonderful) coffee coverage this week has reminded me of a question that’s been at the back of my mind. I run across a number of baking recipes that call for espresso powder, and I’ve yet to find it in stores. Sure, I could just order it online, but since I have an espresso machine, I was wondering: Does anyone have any tips for adding brewed espresso to recipes?
Jan 31, 2008