Blog Posts by Epicurious.com

  • The Best Airplane-Friendly Travel Snacks

    Amy Sherman


    Do you crave Biscoff cookies or Terra Blues potato chips? If you do, you're probably a frequent flier. I travel a fair amount and while some airlines offer decent snacks, more often than not they are sold out or not available by the time they get to my row, so I find it's best to be prepared.

    The advent of 100 calorie snacks has greatly increased single serve options, which is a boon for travelers. I generally fill my purse/carry-on with a selection of sweet and savory snacks to enjoy with my complimentary beverage. In addition, collapsable water bottles are great for travel too, since they take up no room when empty and can be refilled after you get through security. Here are my current top snack picks:

    See more: The Secret to Stress-Free Weight Loss

    1. Nonni's THINaddictives cookies.
    These light and crunchy biscotti are available with fruit and nuts and the individual packages are perfect for snacking.

    2. Justin's peanut butter cups
    . My weakness! I adore these peanut butter

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  • Back-to-School Snack Mixes Your Kids Will Love

    Kendra Vizcaino-Lico


    Preparing for the start of a new school year can stress out even the most organized parents. Planning ahead is essential to surviving the back-to-school season without losing your cool. Eliminate one thing from your seemingly endless to do list each day by preparing healthy snacks ahead of time. Our Snack Mix Generator has quick combos, inspiring ingredients, and tasty tips for you to create a snack mixes that are nutritious and delicious. Here are some tips to help you satisfy your children's seemingly endless appetite:

    See more: Quick and Easy Dinners

    1. Visual appeal:
    Candy makers make their confections colorful because it is appealing to children. Why not do the same thing with healthy snacks? Dried fruits add a burst of color (and vitamins) to bland looking crackers and nuts. If snacks look bright and exciting, kids are more inclined to give them a try.

    2. Serving size:
    You can have too much of a good thing. Even healthy snacks can turn into calorie bombs if

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  • Should Supermarkets Charge for Plastic Bags?

    Joanne Camas


    Denver is the latest city to propose measures to slash plastic bag use. The city is considering a 5-cent charge per bag in an effort to reduce landfill waste by 20 percent.

    See more: Quick and Easy Dinners

    Portland, Oregon, has outright banned plastic bags. The city allows paper bags at checkouts, but shoppers are asked to bring reusable bags when possible. "Plastic grocery and shopping bags may offer short-term convenience, but they have long-term costs. Not only do single-use bags require resources such as petroleum and natural gas to manufacture, their disposal presents a number of problems as well," city leaders say.

    See more: The Secret to Stress-Free Weight Loss

    They add, "These flyaway bags litter our parks and trees, enter storm drains and can eventually end up in rivers and oceans where they break into small, toxic pieces." With 1 billion plastic bags used every year in NYC alone, according to the Bag It documentary, there's certainly reason to look at

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  • The Foods You Should Be Eating for Brain Health

    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

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  • 5 Essential Foods to Take Camping

    Tanya Steele


    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,

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  • Julia Child's 10 Essential Kitchen Tips

    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 Wisdom

    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

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  • The Lemon Meringue Pie that Will Make You Forget Every Other Pie

    Lillian Chou


    Lemon Meringue PieLemon Meringue PieThis grand old American dessert is enormously popular down South for its clear, true sweetness (saved by the edginess of lemon) and its masterful contrast of textures. And somehow it is show-stopping (think beauty pageant) and homey (think Aunt Bee) simultaneously.

    Yield: Makes 8 servings
    Active Time: 50 min
    Total Time: 6 1/2 hr (includes making and chilling pastry and cooling pie

    INGREDIENTS

    For pie:
    - Pastry dough
    - 5 large egg yolks
    - 1 1/4 cups sugar
    - 1/4 cup cornstarch
    - 1/4 teaspoon salt
    - 1 1/4 cups water
    - 1/4 cup whole milk
    - 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
    - 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
    - 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons

    For meringue:
    - 5 large egg whites, at room temperature 30 minutes
    - 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
    - 1/8 teaspoon salt
    - 3/4 superfine granulated sugar

    Make pie shell:
    Preheat oven to 375°F with rack in middle.

    See more: Mac & Cheese: The 3 Best Store-Bought Options

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  • If Store-Bought Iced Coffee Always Dissapoints You, Read This

    Sara Bonisteel


    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 made

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  • The Secret to Perfect Homemade Hummus

    Kemp Minifie


    Homemade hummusHomemade 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 tips

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  • Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

    Nick Malgieri


    Cinnamon rolls with icingCinnamon 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.

    INGREDIENTS

    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:
    -2

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