Megan O. Steintrager
Dark chocolate is my favorite treat, so I never get tired of hearing and sharing good news about it. The latest tasty tidbit, as reported by the Los Angeles Times, is that drinking cocoa may improve brain function. So add mental power to your list of reasons to indulge in reasonable amounts of cacao-containing goodies (in case the facts that chocolate is a longevity-boosting superfood that may give you energy, make you more beautiful, improve cholesterol levels, and help your heart aren't enough reasons to justify your chocolate consumption).
In other good-for-your brain news, the August issue of the Tufts Health and Nutrition Letter reports that Smart Fat Choices Protect Your Brain. The article explains that recent studies add to an increasing body of evidence that consuming more omega-3s and unsaturated oils and fewer foods high in saturated fat may reduce risk of cognitive decline, so remember to load up on fatty fish, nuts, and olive oil.
On the bad news
Blog Posts by Epicurious.com
Megan O. SteintragerRead More »from The Foods You Should Be Eating for Brain Health
Tanya SteeleRead More »from 5 Essential Foods to Take Camping
We are headed off to New York's beautiful Adirondacks for a short family vacation tomorrow, and one of the nights will be spent backpacking in the wilds and camping out for a night. I intend to snuggle into my sleeping bag and look up at this view (above), all the while trying to ignore the rock in my back and quiet my quaking terror of neighboring snakes and spiders.
While one son is obsessively planning his fishing expedition, the other son is focusing on spotting the Eastern Big Foot, and my husband is already worried about getting lost, I am planning our meals. Here are the 5 foods we are taking for an entire 24 hours of camping--clearly this ain't no glamping!
Quick Cook Oats: Add water and dried fruit for an instant filling breakfast.
Assorted Apples: This most versatile of fruits can be a snack or dessert, or cut up and added to oatmeal or the sandwiches below.
Foil Packets: Nowadays you can small lightweight packets of tuna, mayonnaise, peanut butter, and jam,
- A collection of the famous author and TV chef's best advice on buying eggs, proofing yeast, clarifying butter, and more
featuring excerpts from Julia's Kitchen WisdomRead More »from Julia Child's 10 Essential Kitchen Tips
Julia's Kitchen Wisdom: Essential Techniques and Recipes From a Lifetime of Cooking was Julia Child's final cookbook, published just four years before her passing in 2004. She called it "a mini aide-mémoire for general home cookery," and based the slim volume on her own "loose-leaf kitchen reference guide gradually compiled from my own trials, remedies, and errors-corrected as I've cooked my way through the years."
See more: Healthy Comfort Recipes for Any Day
The pages are filled with classic recipes, including roast chicken, boeuf Bourguignon, scalloped potatoes, and chocolate mousse, and yet it is hardly a book for novice cooks. In fact, in the introduction, Child very clearly addresses her audience as "those who are tolerably familiar with culinary language; whose kitchens are normally well equipped with such staples as
- Epicurious.com | Shine Food – Thu, Aug 1, 2013 12:04 PM EDT
- Epicurious.com | Shine Food – Wed, Jul 31, 2013 1:34 PM EDT
I've been drinking cold-brew iced coffee year-round since college, and so when I travel, it is always a challenge to find a suitable substitute that is as smooth and strong as my coffee back home.
I like cold coffee. I like it because it takes less time to consume than hot coffee. Caffeination comes quickly. I use a Toddy maker at home (shown bottom right). It's basically a plastic bucket with a filter in the bottom that holds a pound of coffee grounds and 10-12 cups of water. You let it steep overnight and filter the coffee concentrate into a glass carafe that can sit in the fridge for up to two weeks. You're supposed to water down the concentrate before adding milk and/or sugar. I've been drinking it so long that I drink the concentrate watered down with just milk.
See more: Mac & Cheese: The 3 Best Store-Bought Options
One of my big complaints with ordering an iced coffee from anywhere besides my home (or the coffeeshops of New Orleans) is that it's often madeRead More »from If Store-Bought Iced Coffee Always Dissapoints You, Read This
Homemade hummusHummus has hit the big time! Just look at the increasing amount of refrigerated shelf space in supermarkets devoted to this Middle Eastern dip/spread. As handy as it is to buy, the store-bought stuff just can't match the flavor of homemade, which is why I wasn't at all surprised to see a question on the Epicurious Facebook page about the real deal.
Q: Kelly Davis asks, "What is the secret ingredient to make homemade hummus rock? Mine is found wanting."
Kemp: Since I'd just been in contact with Suzanne Husseini, author of Modern Flavors of Arabia, for last week's blog post, I asked her about hummus. She's got a very simple recipe in her book that involves puréeing freshly cooked chickpeas with ice cubes along with tahini, freshly squeezed lemon juice, and garlic, because the ice not only cools down the chickpeas, but it also acts as an abrasive to break them down. Husseini likes to add a little plain yogurt to "bump up the creaminess."
Here are a few more tipsRead More »from The Secret to Perfect Homemade Hummus
Nick MalgieriRead More »from Homemade Cinnamon Rolls
Cinnamon rolls with icingNick Malgieri, the director of baking and pastry programs at The Institute of Culinary Education in New York City, created this recipe exclusively for Epicurious. The enriched yeast dough is a snap to make and even easier to shape into decadent, delicious cinnamon rolls. Best of all, the rolls can be baked ahead and reheated for a fresh-from-the-oven breakfast treat.
For the dough:
-2/3 cup whole milk
-2 (1/4-ounce) envelopes instant yeast (4 teaspoons total)
-1/2 cup sugar
-2 large eggs, at room temperature
-3 cups unbleached bread flour
-1 teaspoon fine sea salt or table salt
-4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces and softened at room temperature
For the cinnamon butter:
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and softened at room temperature, plus additional butter for greasing the pan and plastic wrap
-3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
-1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
-2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
For the icing:
Kemp MinifieRead More »from The Best Burger You'll Ever Make
The Burger Deluxe
A step-by-step guide to reaching hamburger perfection, whether starting with ground beef or grinding it yourself
Experts have homed in on the humble patty as the key to making the ultimate burger. Chefs swear by their secret proportions of muscle mixtures, which often comprise meat from the chuck, short ribs, brisket, skirt, and sirloin, but can also include the knuckle and other less familiar cuts in the steer. But what if you want to make a simple, delicious burger with meat from your local market? What follows are general guidelines for getting to the perfect patty.
Chuck All the Way
For the home cook, the best beef for hamburgers comes from the chuck, the large shoulder section in the forequarter of the steer that happens to have a good proportion of muscle to fat. Fat equals flavor, and many experts will tell you that the juiciest, most flavorful burgers are made from chuck that is at least 20 percent fat.
If your store doesn't carry that proportion, don't be shy
Joshua M. Bernstein
Five great brews to drink with meats and veggies cooked on the grill, fired in the smoker, or slathered with sauce
Barbecue season is upon us, and for many, it's a merry time of spatulas, tongs, and belly-stuffing celebrations with family and friends, along with exalting mankind's most primal union: fire and meat. But while apron-clad cooks obsessively select their cuts of meat and measure marinades with scientific precision that would impress a Top Chef, the beer pairing is barely given a thought. After all, beer is beer, right?
Not quite. Each protein (whether surf or turf) or vegetable has a singular flavor profile and deserves to be carefully coupled with a beer, and one that's not just a can of the cheapest ubiquitous lager. Think about it: A fragrant, refreshing hefeweizen like Weihenstephaner Hefeweissbier may be a grand grilled-vegetable or -shellfish pairing, but it's overwhelmed by the earthy, rich flavors of a hamburger or a steak. Instead, redRead More »from The Best Beers for a BBQ
Kelly SenyaiRead More »from Fourth of July Food: Red, White, and Blue Chips
Red, white and blue chips for July 4thServe up a homemade take on a summertime snack with a recipe for patriotic potato and beet chips, plus tips on the dos and don'ts of deep-frying.
No Fourth of July feast would be complete without crispy, salty chips to pair with your lineup of flame-kissed favorites, including burgers, chicken, seafood, and sides. But we're skipping the store-bought varieties and bringing the oil to a boil for homemade Red, White, and Blue Potato and Beet Chips.
Our recipe combines the classic flavor and crunch of potato chips with the slight sweetness of beet chips. The result is a patriotic snack that's brimming with red, white, and blue spirit-perfect for your Independence Day bash or any summer picnic. So fire up the burners for our Red, White, and Blue Potato and Beet Chips recipe, plus handy technique tips to help you overcome your fear of frying.
Set Up for Success: It's important to assemble all the necessary ingredients and tools before the first potato takes its plunge into