@hems79 ATK makes me feel smart and I can take their experiments and apply it to other things. I learn stuff. But I also like Cook’s Country because: 1) I don’t always need to know how many ways they tried to slice the onions, 2) you get the same recipes eventually, 3) you get the handy little card inserts so you get MORE recipes. (I speak here of the magazines. I enjoy the TV shows as well. I find Chris Kimball’s new Milk Street to be pedantic and a little too polished. I have gotten some good recipes there too, it’s just not as fun.) As for Cook Books, I have the ATK best of, and that is where I always turn first.
@dannybeans@Kidsandliz i always find that strange, because all cooking is science. and baking, especially if dough is involved, is the king of “what feels right.” you can precisely measure all day, but if you don’t know how something is supposed to look or feel or behave and how to adjust for that it really doesn’t matter. baking so often needs a little more of this or a little less of that, and you can make additions or substitutions to your liking as with anything. so many kitchen myths floating around, i wonder genuinely how they got started. it’s interesting to me. but i digress, my only point being if you handed a beginner a recipe for meatloaf and a recipe for banana bread the success rates would probably be similar.
@jerk_nugget Having done massive amounts of both since I was old enough to reach the stove (not to mention for a living for a decade or so), I respectfully disagree. I suspect that the reality is that it’s all subjective, though, so I won’t belabor the point.
@dannybeans@jerk_nugget Well I do know how to cook. Reluctantly. And did more of it with more variety after I adopted a 10 year old since DHS takes a dim view of not cooking sufficiently to meet the needs of a growing kid… but I hate to cook and given a choice wouldn’t. If I do cook it better be able to be done in 20 min or less start to finish, the shorter the better. Now on the other hand I am more than willing to eat the fancy stuff other people have cooked
@dannybeans totally - any creative endeavor is subjective, not to mention factors like accessibility, environment, education, and tools which make every cooking experience different.
science is a very valuable tool in the kitchen, understanding when and why ingredients behave the way they do gives the person cooking a base of knowledge to fall back on and a confident and relaxed cook makes for good eats. there are both easy and difficult, anything goes and more technical recipes in both the cooking and the baking worlds, and i think the way people talk about baking can often be a bit misguided and results in people not trying certain things because they assume it’s beyond their ability and/or doesn’t fit their cooking style or personality type.
cooking and baking are science and art, all together, all at once. that’s part of what makes them so interesting and so great. well, that and the deliciously edible results anyway
all of the above, except meal kits. no shade to meal kits, they just aren’t something i use.
i have a zillion recipes. my newest favorite that i’ve made three times already is arroz verde or green rice. it comes from the NYT and is written by tejal rao.
what you want to do is heat up some olive oil or butter in a pot and toast a cup of jasmine rice for 4-5 minutes until it smells good and the rice is turning opaque and a little golden.
meanwhile jam half a chopped vidalia onion, a couple roasted hatch chiles (or poblanos if you ain’t got any hatch left, with a jalapeño for heat), a couple cloves of garlic, more cilantro than parsley, and a teaspoon of kosher salt and a 1/4c of homemade chicken stock into the cup for your immersion blender and blend. might take a couple seconds, but it will go.
add it to the rice along with a cup of the homemade stock, bring it to a bubble then reduce the heat to low, cover and let it simmer for 15 minutes. then turn the heat off and let it continue to sit covered on that burner for another 15 minutes. when that’s up, stir and fluff the rice with a spatula and squeeze some lime juice over it.
so far we’ve had it with cajun rubbed roast chicken, with black beans, inside enchiladas, as the base of carnitas burrito bowls, and i plan to make it again tonight to go with green chile chicken.
From the back of the bag of frozen, pre-cooked chicken strips.
“Preheat oven to 350. Cook for 18-20 minutes.”
Although, I’ve tweaked the recipe to suit my own tastes (I’m creative like that).
I use a toaster-oven instead of a “conventional” oven, and I cook at 375; I always add 25* to make up for the inadequacies of the toaster-oven, seems to work.
People are always asking me for my recipes. My recipe is: think of what you want to eat. What goes good with that? What seasonings would be nice in there? How many portions do you want to make? Go! If you ask me before I start cooking or immediately afterward I can write down what I put in and more or less the amounts. But good cooking also involves choosing the right kind of pots and pans, adding things in the right order at the right time, covering or uncovering, stirring properly, getting the heat right, etc. Also selecting the best and most tasty vegetables and cuts of meat when you’re shopping. Cutting ingredients to yield the right texture and flavor, to cook at the desired speed. The actual recipe is only a small part of cooking a great meal.