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Cooking (65 posts)
Mixon, whose family started a barbecue take-out business in Georgia, is a competitive pit master who proudly wears a massive ring commemorating his third barbecue world championship win. He competes in many events, from Whole Hog to Pork Shoulder, and knows just what the judges are looking for. When it comes to chicken, they want thighs—and they want them all the same size. Chicken thighs can vary, of course, though most are square-shaped. So Mixon found that by using poultry shears to trim them to three or four inches wide, he could fit a square piece of meat into a round hole—the muffin tin—and they'd all be the same dimension.
[After the jump, what exactly cupcake chicken looks like...]
The fact that Father's Day just happens to fall at the beginning of the barbecue season sure does work out nicely for dads who love a barbecue (and really, what dad doesn't like an easygoing, outdoor eating extravaganza?). Cristina Ferrare, whose risotto Oprah has happily made, shares her recipes for Baby Back Ribs and Barbecued Baked Beans. They're sweet and savory, thanks to a tasty new barbecue sauce Cristina found recently. Make them this Sunday for Dad, but keep the recipes handy for barbecues all summer long.
Amy's Bread by Amy Scherber
"Amy has a no-nonsense way of explaining how to make simple breads and pastries that have guided me for years. If you're starting a cookbook collection, this book will make you feel Amy's passion and spirit for bread baking. She's not hoity-toity. She's more like, 'Hey, this is my bakery, and here are the breads that we make—and you can make them too.' Bread is something a lot of people shy away from, but Amy makes it approachable."
The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum
"This is an introductory book that has enough in it that even professionals who've been baking for years will find it useful. Rose is famous within the pastry world for her exacting testing and measurements. She isn't a restaurant pastry chef, but you're not going to make restaurant deserts in your kitchen—you're going to make cakes for your family. (But we use this book almost daily at my bakery, Flour, and a variation of her sour cream coffee cake is on the menu.)"
Next: More of Joanne Chang's indispensable cookbooks...
Why don't people chill red wines? It's all about tannins, Oldman says, which come from grape skins and seeds. They're used in the making of red wine but not white. Tannins are often described as tasting bitter and puckery (they're also why strong black tea can taste astringent), and cooler temperatures make them more prominent. But light reds have imperceptible tannin levels, so chilling those varieties isn't a problem. In fact, doing so will make the wine taste more refreshing and will help "focus" its flavor. It will also make it taste less alcoholic, or "hot," in winespeak.
As Charity Ferreira's article in O magazine's June issue shows, making Popsicles at home—rocket-shaped or otherwise—isn't rocket science. Still, Oprah.com editor Leigh Newman hit a few snafus when she tried making pops recently. Ferreira came to the rescue.
Q: Leigh had some trouble removing the pops from their molds, even when she rinsed them under warm water. Any advice?
A: Running the outsides of the molds under warm running water should be enough to get the pops out of their molds—but it may take up to a half minute or so. The other option, if you want to unmold all the pops at once, is to fill a bowl with hot water and submerge the pop molds to just below their tops (so that water doesn't run into the pop itself). Let them sit for 30 seconds, and then check to see if the pops slide out easily.
1. Go to the greenmarket at least once a week for fruit (strawberries now, cherries in July, peaches in August) and vegetables (especially arugula and corn). Though, I refuse to fall for those pricey zucchini flowers...at least not too often.
2. Always have home-brewed iced tea in the fridge.
3. Eat more no-cook dinners, whether it's a chilled soup, cold roasted chicken, a hacked meal or a big salad.
1. Savory Rhubarb and Chipotle Goat Cheese Pizza from Eats Well with Others
A pizza topped with a compote of rhubarb, balsamic vinegar and cranberry juice, sprinkled with smoky chipotle-infused goat cheese. Sounds weird? It works.
2. Sweet-and-Savory Rhubarb Jam from Cookbook Archaeology
This would be good with sharp Cheddar; some might even put it on grilled cheese. Also: with sausage on an English muffin for breakfast.
3. Savory Rhubarb Lentil Curry from Scissors and Spice
French lentils + rhubarb + mustard seeds + sweet potatoes = delicious
1. How big should my plate be?
2. What are they trying to tell us without actually saying?
The word "meat" doesn't appear anywhere on the diagram. Is using "protein" instead code for "eat less meat" (not that there's anything wrong with that, as we learned from Michael Pollan)?
3. Isn't there protein in vegetables, grains and dairy? So why is there a separate section for protein on the plate?
The recipe comes from Homemade Soda by Andrew Schloss (Storey), a new cookbook on making your own soda and on using soda in sweet and savory dishes. It calls for root beer, along with chili pepper, ginger and soy sauce—which make the wings taste sweet, sour, salty and hot. I could've made my own root beer (the cookbook has an entire chapter on it), but I just bought a can of 365 brand at Whole Foods. I skipped the dried hot chili pepper in favor of a half-teaspoon of dried red pepper flakes because I had a huge container of them at home already. Otherwise, I followed the recipe closely, putting the wings in a pot with the root beer mixture.