Homemade ice cream is so good and you can make it with just a few ingredients and no special equipment. Most cookbooks and magazine recipes expect you to have an ice cream maker at home, but you can imitate the churning effect of an ice cream maker by shaking or tossing around the ingredients inside a tightly sealed ziplock bag.
The microwave oven is a monumental technological achievement that's saved college students and single people from starvation for decades. Almost 97% of all American households have one, which makes it the most-owned kitchen appliance in US homes right after the refrigerator.
There are certain ingredients that chefs regularly use to elevate their food beyond the status of what us mere mortals can create. Shallots are one. Good, real Parmesan cheese is another. And the rind of that real Parmesan cheese just so happens to be one of the culinary world's biggest kept secrets.
How To: Brita Filters Costing You a Fortune? Use These DIY Methods to Clean Your Water for Half the Price
No matter what the clean freaks out there try to tell me, I still drink my Los Angeles tap water without a care in the world. I figure that I've already consumed much more heinous things in my lifetime. Street vendor "steak" burritos comes to mind.
I'm an impulsive baker, which means that the instructions to "bring ingredients to room temperature" make me want to kick myself for not thinking ahead. Sure, some ingredients like milk or water you can heat up, but that means messing up an extra pot or pan.
Garlic—it stinks so good! It's one of nature's most wondrous foods, being both delicious and incredibly healthy. What's not to love? Well, it is kind of a pain to prep, whether you're peeling a couple of cloves for a sauce or a whole head and trying to mince it finely. One way to get around the whole peeling and mincing issue every time you want garlic in a dish is by buying pre-made garlic-infused olive oil, except that stuff is pretty pricey. Learn to make it at home and you'll get all the ...
Dried spices and herbs seem to be immortal; a peek in your parents or grandparents' cupboards will likely unveil cinnamon, basil, and oregano older than you.
Desserts always taste better when they are sugar-coated—and even more so when they're coated in powdered sugar. In particular, crinkle cookies—cake-y cookies that are chewy on the inside and crispy on the outside—are famous for the powdered sugar that creates their cracked appearance.
French toast is one of those things that everybody kind of knows how to make, but few people know how to do really well. And while the dish originally does hail from France (its original name, pain perdu, means lost or wasted bread), it has become a beloved American breakfast dish.
Check it out: you save more dough (ba dum bump) when you order a large pizza than with any other size. Why is this true? NPR reporter Quoctrung Bui's engineer friend pointed out that a medium pizza was twice as big as a small one, yet only cost slightly more.
No summer season would be complete without potato salad, an essential side dish. The flavors and textures of a simple potato salad can be totally satisfying as is, but add in a few items and you can have a dish that is absolutely extraordinary.
Hands down, chips and dip are the best entertainment foods to ever exist. This fact can be confirmed in an instant by any grocery shopper strolling down the chip isle on Super Bowl Sunday or New Year's Eve. However, you may want to hold off on buying those standard salsas or dips at the store—especially if you own a food processor.
Cast-iron cookware breeds a strange kind of obsession. When I got my first pan, I spent untold hours seasoning, cooking, researching the best non-soap methods to use for cleaning, and re-seasoning that thing. Finally, I became exhausted by the whole process and realized that you can skip seasoning a cast-iron pan as long as you use it regularly and clean and oil it properly in-between uses.
Many home cooks were taught never to press down on a burger as it cooks since that would ruin your all-beef patty by getting it to release the juices it needs to stay tender and moist.
If you're a fan of Thai food, I'm sure you're familiar with sticky rice. There is something so special about its chewy texture and sweet flavor. If you have a desire to make it in your own kitchen but don't have the proper tools such as a traditional bamboo basket or stackable steamer, there are several other methods that work just as well. Once you try these alternative methods, I'm sure you'll be "sticking" to them for a while. What Makes Sticky Rice So Sticky?
Baking powder and baking soda are two staples almost everyone has around that seem to last forever. But a lot of people don't know that they eventually start to lose their potency after enough time on the shelf. If you can't remember when you bought it, it's probably time for a new box.
Cold brewing tea and coffee are all the rage, and for good reason: they're idiot-proof. I, personally, am a total dunce at brewing coffee. It either ends up strong enough to peel paint from a car or so weak that you can see through it. Meanwhile, I have friends who inevitably brew green tea to the point where it's painful to drink it.
Let's be honest, most of us buy the bottom-shelf vodka either because we're broke or because we're going to disguise the gag-inducing taste of it with juice or something fizzy. If you're cooking or baking with vodka (ice-cold vodka works wonders in pie crust), what's the point of buying Belvedere?
"Tempering chocolate" is one of those intimidating-sounding kitchen tasks that keeps novice cooks away from some really fun stuff like making candy, chocolate-dipped biscotti, and fruit.
It's a basic law of cooking: whenever you're really craving something, you don't have it. All you want is a glass of wine? Chances are you finished the bottle while braising meat last night. Want nothing more than a sandwich right now? Yep, you finished the bread with breakfast. You'd kill for a steak? They're all in the freezer, and you don't want to wait while they thaw; you want your steak now.
In my opinion (and I suspect in the opinion of the masses), there is no greater snack food than potato chips. They're crunchy, they're salty, they're fried, and they're bite size; what's not to love? But I believe that, like almost all foods, potato chips can get even better. Especially if they're the most basic garden variety type of chip: sea salt.
There's something primal about the smell of smoking food. Somewhere deep in the recesses of our souls, we remember a time when humans only ate by the fire. Or perhaps that's just something I tell myself. Either way, it's hard to smell smoke and food and not feel like you should be eating. And, as chef Edi Frauneder said in a recent Saveur article, "Grilling is convivial. There's something about this act of coming together over an open flame that just says vacation."
While it's easy to make fun of water with "electrolytes," there's actually some science behind it. Despite the name, electrolyte-enhanced water isn't all that high-tech, it mostly means that it's been infused with vitamins and minerals such as potassium and sodium, which are very helpful in preventing dehydration. Unfortunately, electrolyte water isn't especially cheap, and compared to the tap, it's downright expensive. Luckily, there's a few recipes out there that can help you mix your own e...
Any beer aficionado who's been to Ireland will always talk about how the Guinness there "just tastes different." But save your eye rolls, skeptics: it turns out your favorite lagerhead actually has a valid point.
It happens to even the most avid cereal eaters: sooner or later you open a box, unfurl the crinkled plastic bag, and find that the cereal inside is stale. Maybe you forgot about it, maybe you ate it too slowly, or maybe you just found a new, better cereal and left it behind like Andy left Woody. Either way, the crunchy goodness is now stale, and you grab the box and walk to the trash can. Stop!
I love making stock. It's thrifty because you get extra use out of poultry bones and vegetable peelings, plus having homemade stock on hand makes so many things taste better, from soup to stews to pasta sauces. If you deglaze a pan, homemade turkey stock, booze of some kind, and butter will create an eye-rollingly good sauce in mere moments. One task I do not love? Figuring out how to skim the damn fat off the stock (or soup) after I've made it. It's necessary to skim the fat as you boil down...
Like Costco's price codes or the tags on your bread, the numerical codes printed on those sticky little fruit and vegetable labels can reveal a lot of information to us consumers. Once you understand the codes, you can look at that little label (also known as PLU, or "price look up" label) and know whether the produce you're about to buy or eat was treated with pesticides, genetically modified, both, or neither. Before we go any further with deciphering the codes on these labels, let's take a...
There are few kitchen tools as elusive as the oyster knife. Many people—even seafood lovers—don't own one. If you do own one, it probably gets used so infrequently that it gets sent to the very back of the shelf where it proceeds to get lost. Then you accidentally find the knife once a month when you don't need it, but can't for the life of you find the sneaky little thing when you do need it.
How To: You've Been Wasting the Best Part! 5 Delicious Uses for Your "Empty" Nutella & Peanut Butter Jars
Some food jars seem like they're actually designed to prevent you from enjoying every last bit inside. The remnants of sticky foods like Nutella and peanut butter are almost impossible to scrape out with a knife or spoon, and it's a shame to throw out something that tastes so good—especially when it's the best part. A spatula could help you get that last drop out from the walls or bottom easier, but that's just ruining your chance at maximizing the full potential of those remains into somethi...
I love making everything from scratch, but some things are just easier to buy. So there are times when you have to find a creative way to split the difference. For me, the easiest dish to buy without compromising on flavor is cornbread mix.
If you have ever attempted to mix and shape your own meatballs or burger patties, you may have endured bits of meat continuously and stubbornly sticking to your hands. This can make shaping more challenging than it should be.
Fresh salsa is so tasty. Who can resist the robust mix of spices, the mouth-watering heat of jalapeños, and the juiciness of fresh tomatoes? Alas, I don't always make my own and have to get the pre-made stuff.
For those of you that prefer a soft-baked cookie that is fluffy in the middle, using cake flour instead of regular all-purpose (AP) flour is your secret baking weapon. "But I don't have cake flour," you protest. Fear not: if your kitchen is sans cake flour, you can easily whip some up by mixing together AP flour and a little bit of cornstarch for the same results.
As a kid, my mother would always bring the noodles onto the table in a colander, then bring the pot of sauce she cooked separately. So I grew up with the idea that pasta and sauce were two separate entities that you combined table-side, and continued to eat pasta that way well into my adulthood when cooking at home. It was only much later that I realized the error of my ways... that pasta could taste so much better than I had previously imagined.
I love me some salad, but I'm also kind of a big baby when it comes to eating them. The greens have to be perfectly crisp and fresh, which is why I'm such a nut about storing them properly, including rethinking how I use my refrigerator, using a paper towel or dry cloth to wrap them, or even puffing a little CO2 into the plastic bag to keep them fresh. I've even developed an arsenal of tricks to restore life to soggy greens.
Dried fruit makes a great snack or salad topping, but after a while, they tend to become fossilized, rock-hard versions of their former selves. At this point, most folks probably just toss them out, as they're unpleasant to chew on when eaten raw and even more unpleasant to eat in bread or cooked with other ingredients.
If you have a good food processor or blender, there's no reason not to make your own nut butters, whether you like almond, cashew, sunflower, or the perennial classic, peanut.
Knowing if your meat is cooked properly is both the difference between a delicious meal and an inedible one... and the difference between making your guests sick and keeping them safe.
My first time opening a coconut was a confusing and frustrating experience. I remember the loud echoing noise as I hit it with a knife, a hammer, and my countertop. It took multiple tools, YouTube videos, and plenty of angry sighs for me to get it open.
When alcohol tastes bad, there's little you can do to save it—or so you think. While it might seem easier to toss your entire bottle of old, opened wine, or to give up and drink crappy vodka anyway, there are creative ways to turn a spoiled or just plain bad boozy beverage into one you actually want to drink.