A juicy, perfectly cooked pork chop can rival a good steak and chops of the porcine variety are way cheaper than any cut of beef (except like, stew meat and cheap hamburger). But pork chops are easy to overcook and this can intimidate skittish home cooks, barring them from enjoying this fiscally responsible, incredibly delicious protein.
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Wasteful packaging is an inescapable part of drawing breath in a capitalist society but, for a variety of reasons, most people can't alter their food choices based solely on the materials that contain it. This is why I reuse food packaging whenever I can: sure, it cuts down on waste, but I also get to stock up on storage containers for free.
The circumstances surrounding death are always a surprise. Even when it isn't sudden, when it has been expected for weeks - months, even - there is always the shock of absence and loss, and the overwhelming feeling that comes with all of the details that need to be tended to while in the throes of grief.
It's in those moments that people tend to neglect their own well being, as self-care often ends up as a last priority after taking care of children and sorting out funeral arrangements.
Liquid smoke, an additive that imparts a charred wood flavour to food without using a smoker, has been dismissed as both "cheating" and "nasty" but, if used with a delicate hand, it can produce some tasty results.. I love liquid smoke in my apartment-approved, smoke-free, sous vide ribs, but it has other clever uses, none of which have anything to do with meat.
Leek greens are quickly becoming my favourite part of the leek. Not only are they freaking banging when pan fried, but they can be used to infuse fish and other seafood with delicate, oniony flavour.
If you have an oven with a convection setting - meaning it is equipped with a fan that circulates the hot air around the food - it may be tempting to use it on your cakes, cookies and biscuits to help things cook "more evenly". However, according to Patron Saint of Good Baked Things, Stella Parks (AKA The Brave Tart), this can lead to non-optimum results.
No matter how many flawless custards or mirror glazes you've made in your life, some culinary techniques just seem to invite disaster, especially those that hinge on precise temperature control. If you need to evenly heat a delicate substance to a precise temperature, the microwave might seem like a horrible choice — but it's often the best tool for the job.
Making your own spice blends isn't particularly challenging, but buying a single bottle of a blend is both more convenient and fiscally responsible than buying five bottles of five different spices. Plus, if you're just getting into the world of seasonings and spices, blends can be a bit less intimidating.
With the exception of cherry tomatoes - which are good pretty much all year - I try to avoid buying tomatoes until at least mid-summer, as purchasing them outside their season usually leads to disappointment. But I'm not perfect, and the other day I slipped up and bought (quite) a few on the vine. They were, as one would expect, a little lacklustre in the flavour department.
There are chillies you know are going to be spicy and chillies you know are not, but then there are the chillies that could be mild, hot, or "please remove my tongue from my mouth and place it in a glass of ice milk". Luckily, there is an easy way to predict the spicy outcome, and it was right under our noses all along.
Any time I have ever mentioned bonito flakes, either online or in this thing called "real life", one very well meaning person will say, "I thought those were for cats." While it's true the a cat would find them very pleasing, these feathery, savoury and smoky flakes are best enjoyed by humans, who are more equipped to appreciate the umami-packed delicacy.
Instant noodles may be the perfect cheap food. It's good by itself, but there are always creative ways to transform it into something better. My favourite thing to do is to crack an egg into the pot while my noodles are cooking.