Blog Posts by Food52

  • How to Make Tall, Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes

    Whether you're a seasoned home cook or just getting in touch with your inner chef, the need for a go-to pancake recipe is universal. But finding one that delivers the sort of high-rising pancakes you find at the local diner is easier said than done. And that's because it's just as much about technique as it is about the ingredients.

    RELATED: Whole-Grain, Fruit-Filled Pancakes

    It's a simple fact that pancakes need a leavening agent like baking soda or baking powder to rise, but it's also true that those agents need an acidic ingredient to create those air bubbles in the batter, which lead to tall, fluffy pancakes. Buttermilk is a favorite choice for adding acidity, but milk mixed with lemon juice also works in a pinch.

    RELATED: Eggo-Style Weekday Waffles to Freeze and Toast

    But none of that matters if you don't cook your pancakes immediately, and take advantage of all those little batter bubbles you just formed. The reaction between baking powder and buttermilk starts as soon as the dry

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  • Dinner Tonight: Smoked Salmon Toasts + Green Beans

    We believe smoked salmon should not be relegated to a bagel topper. Tonight, try putting it on toast slathered with herb butter. Toast can be a complete and satisfying dinner, but in the attempt of heeding our mothers' advice and balancing food groups, add a little something green on the side; we propose pairing the toasts with seasonally appropriate green beans. You will feel so cosmopolitan and French.

    The Menu

    Smoked Salmon on Mustard-Chive and Dill Buttered Toasts

    Photos by James Ransom

    Serves 20

    10 ounces of the best quality smoked salmon in medium-thin slices (Norwegian or Wild Alaskan)
    2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
    1 tablespoon lemon zest
    31/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
    1/2 cup finely chopped chives or green onions
    1 tablespoon fresh dill, finely chopped
    1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    1 thin, long French Baguette, cut into 1/4-inch slices

    1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place bread slices on baking sheet. Bake

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  • 5 Tips for Better, Juicier Grilled Chicken Breasts

    In Food52's series On the Grill, columnist Tom Hirschfeld shows us how to grill everything from steaks to salads with confidence (and style).

    Today: Tom shares five ways to defend against dry chicken breasts.

    Grilling boneless skinless chicken breast presents a set of problems. I'm a firm believer that leaving the skin on and the bones in your chicken goes a long way to alleviating tough, dried out breast. But it's an unpopular decision, because of the convenience and the ease with which we can gobble up the boneless skinless kind.

    There are ways, however, to defend yourself against dry chicken.

    Bigger is not better when it comes to grilling a chicken breast.
    They don't grow them like they used to. Today's standard meat bird is a hybrid designed to grow big breasts and nice thighs.

    >>RELATED: The Art of Honest Fried Chicken

    The birds of yesteryear, however, were all about the thighs, and the breast was almost non-existent. These days it's not unusual to

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  • Genius Sesame Noodles

    Every week on, Senior Editor Kristen Miglore digs up Genius Recipes -- the ones that make us rethink cooking myths, get us talking, and change the way we cook.

    Today: A salad that will be even better packed up for lunch tomorrow -- with a creamy, yet vegan, sesame dressing. (If you're thinking secret ingredient, you're right!)

    Patricia Yeo's Sesame Noodles from Food52

    Rare is the salad that holds up on day two. Greens wilt, alliums go afoul, grains get weathered and dry. And improving with age seems out of the question, like asking salad to not be a salad.

    Patricia Yeo's Sesame Noodles on Food52
    So when we find a good one, we should hold it tight, and imprint it on our animal brains as a template to repeat and riff on -- to make our lives easier in all the brown bag lunches, picnics, and potlucks that will come our way.

    >>RELATED: 10 dishes that taste better the next day.

    Here's your next imprint-worthy model for next-day salad success, from chef Patricia Yeo via Fine Cooking. It hinges on a sultry sesame dressing. It's creamy despite Read More »from Genius Sesame Noodles
  • How to Choose the Right Oil for Cooking and Baking

    Inspired by conversations on the Food52 Hotline, we're sharing tips and tricks that make navigating all of our kitchens easier and more fun.

    Today: When it comes to cooking and baking with oil, it's all about finding Mr. Right.

    Walking into the oil aisle is a sensory overload: all of those glistening bottles lined neatly in a row, their labels brimming with information. Once upon a time, the decision would have been made for you -- vegetable oil or nothing -- but these days, you have to process loads of information when picking out your purchase. Do you want refined or unrefined? Olive oil or canola? And boy, does the packaging on the pistachio oil look appealing or what?

    >>RELATED: How to get over your fear of frying

    There are two elements you should take into account when choosing oil:

    1. The flavor of the oil
    2. The temperature at which it will be cooked

    For frying, the cardinal rule of oil selection is to pick an oil with a smoke point -- the temperature at

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  • Genius Microwaved Eggplant

    Every week Food52's Senior Editor Kristen Miglore is unearthing recipes that are nothing short of genius.

    Today: The best, fastest, lightest eggplant technique you haven't tried yet. (It's in the microwave. Don't be mad.)

    Barbara Kafka's Marinated Eggplant from Food52

    I'd like to make an announcement: You can cook eggplant in the microwave -- and you should.

    I know what you're going to say. You'll want to talk about the relationship you have with your eggplant -- how you love to rake it around the roasting pan or plunge it in hot oil with all your senses engaged. You want to be right there with it, watching its stubborn, spongy belly meat give in and melt into soft gold.

    >>RELATED: Another Genius Recipe: Marcella Hazan's Tomato Sauce with Onion and Butter.

    That's lovely. I want that too, sometimes. But what if it's still 90 degrees in your kitchen? What if you're hungry now? What if you don't want to trick your eggplant into submission with a lot of oil, for the umpteenth time this summer?

    Barbara Kafka's Marinated Eggplant from Food52

    Eggplant, we love you, but you're a

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  • Dinner Tonight: Chard and Lemon Ricotta Pasta + Kale Anchovy Salad

    For Dinner Tonight this week, we are going full on kale-centric -- not because it's so buzzy in fairly recent history, but because it is essential to a killer pasta/salad combination. No excuses on this one people, the whole meal will come together in the time it takes to decide what to order in for take-out. To cut down on your grocery bill, we propose substituting kale for chard in the pasta -- or, if you're feeling subversive, you could always say poo poo to kale altogether and go with chard. So on your way home, buy a big bunch of kale (or don't) -- throw it in your pasta and make a salad with the leftovers.

    The Menu

    Swiss Chard and Lemon Ricotta Pasta by TheWimpyVegetarian

    Photo by James Ranson

    Serves 4

    3 cups raw Swiss chard, sliced (including the stems)
    2 handfuls dried spaghetti noodles
    2 strips bacon, cut into 1/4" slices or lardons
    1/2 large shallot, minced olive oil as needed
    1/3 cup ricotta cheese
    2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
    zest from 1/2 lemon
    1/4 teaspoon salt, to taste
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  • A Brighter, Fresher Green Goddess Dressing

    It's always more fun to DIY. Every week at Food52, we spare you a trip to the grocery store and show you how to make small batches of great foods at home.

    Today: Food52's Managing Editor Brette Warshaw gives us a greener, brighter, and even-more-attractive Green Goddess.

    Green Goddess Dressing from Food52

    How could you not want to eat something called Green Goddess?

    Green Goddess, like Super Fudge Chunk ice cream or a Tres Leches doughnut, is one of those things that you can't not, by terms of name alone, be attracted to. It's the kind of thing that when your friends order "a side of green goddess" with their fries at your local diner -- an at least once-a-week occurrance during my high school days -- you can't help but purring to the waitress, "Oooooh yeah, me too."

    >>RELATED: Avocado makes everything better, even smoothies.

    But unlike Super Fudge Chunk or that Tres Leches doughnut, the typical Green Goddess doesn't leave you in a state of utter relaxation, of joy, of glazed-eyed bliss. Instead,

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  • The Ultimate Chocolate Bundt Cake

    The richest, deepest, darkest chocolate cake, ready in under an hour.

    If Betty Crocker had a sophisticated, seductive cousin, this would be her signature cake. The secret to it's moist and tender texture is the use of butter instead of oil, and a fair amount of coffee for depth. Perhaps the very best part of this recipe is that it can be thrown together in 15 minutes tops -- plus another 45 minutes for baking means from start to finish you'll be in chocolate cake bliss in under an hour.

    >>RELATED: A bite-sized way to get your chocolate fix: Chocolate Fantasy Brownie Bites.

    Chocolate Bundt Cake

    Serves 12

    2 cups sugar
    1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
    3/4 cup dutch process cocoa powder, plus more for dusting
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    2 teaspoons baking soda
    1 cup sour milk
    1 cup freshly brewed strong black coffee
    1/2 cup vegetable oil
    2 eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla

    1. Preheat oven to 350. Butter a bundt pan and dust the inside

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  • Homemade Cherry Pie Filling

    It's always more fun to DIY. Here, we spare you a trip to the grocery store and show you how to make small batches of great foods at home.

    Today: Erin McDowell (a.k.a. apartmentcooker) redeems cherry pie filling from its gloopy, canned past. Grab your pitters, everyone.

    I just spent a blissful ten days visiting family in Kansas -- it was the first time in nearly five years that I have visited my home during the summer months. Most Midwesterners would probably shake their heads at the glee I felt driving up to my parents' home in the sweltering heat and unbearable humidity, but all I could see was my mama's garden. Big, beautiful, and overflowing -- it's a home cook's playground. Every summer, my mama preserves the garden's excess, canning it for the months when we've forgotten what summer cucumbers taste like. This is where I grew up, and this is why I can.

    >>RELATED: Canning 101

    Growing up in a household that values fresh food fosters a deep love of all things homemade. I also

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