You know how bloggers often go on and on about being absent and so on? I’m not going to do that even though I can see the appeal … so much to say about all of the things that have kept me away from the blog. But I’m not going to tell you about my impossible lists and my unbelievable busyness and my incredible ability to cook and clean and rake and do homework with my kids. Because that’s everyone’s life, more or less, and I for one am sick of hearing about all of that. So this is my humble pledge to avoid those two blogging traps: apologizing and being overly harried.
I WILL tell you about the insanely awesome new magazine that I picked up yesterday … omg I love it!! It’s called Milk Street and was placed strategically at the checkout line so I had the opportunity to stare at it for about 10 minutes … just close enough to read the cover but just far away that getting it would have cost me my place in line (or a conversation with the stern lady behind me). So once it was my turn I grabbed it and perused in the the minute and a half that I had while the teller rang in my other purchases.
It’s written by Christopher Kimball – the dude who headed up the famous Cook’s Illustrated magazine. I have loved to read them mainly because the recipes are perfected in “America’s Test Kitchen” (which is an American TV show that I’ve never watched because I never watch TV … not to be confused with Netflix, people!)
For whatever reason, I enjoy learning about the science behind cooking, and the trials and errors that chefs go through in order to get the result that they are aiming for. I’ve endeavored to do the same thing at home when I’ve wanted a chewier cookie, a less sweet jam, a nuttier crisp, a lemon curd that’s more tart. So I felt I’d hit the jackpot years ago when I started picking up the magazines. (FYI they are not written by theme – but this doesn’t matter to me).
There are others than have come out that ARE by theme – these are from “America’s Test Kitchen” – and I love them! They are generally “best of” compilations and I can’t resist that shit!
More recently I picked up a big fat Test Kitchen cookbook – no idea why – it’s not all that beautiful … but I know that the content is great. I haven’t really gotten into it yet but it’s got 15 years of TV show recipes in it, so I figure I have 15 years to get through it.
The best thing about these cookbooks – apart from all of the stories about the proces of testing recipes – are all of the scientific reasons why various foods need to be prepped or cooked in a certain way. (The hamburger patty lesson changed the way I cook burgers and my recount of why the patties need to be shaped like a donut is usually enthralling…) I also love learning about the different products and ingredients that they try out (e.g., pans, blenders, foil, chocolate) … in quite a bit of detail. I LOVE LOVE LOVE that they don’t have advertising in their magazines and no brand pays them to include their ingredients or cook with their pots / utensils / dish ware.
Tonight we picked off the first recipe in the Milk Street mag – tenderloin done in a Moroccan style dry rub (coriander, cumin, paprika, salt, pepper). So tasty! Served with my aunt’s recipe for roasted (whole) cauliflower and a rice pilaf … it was a fabulous meal.
Can’t wait to try out more of the recipes (although not the charred brussel sprouts – eek, I’d rather poke my eyes out with sticks!)