Pink Slime, Deconstructed

See Arr Oh Well, if you come from the meat producers’ camp, you instead refer to “slime” as lean, finely-textured beef, or LFTB. Connective tissue, trimmings, and scraps from industrial butcher plants are mixed in a large steel reactor, where technicians heat the mixture to 100 oF, initiating tissue lysis – fats and oils begin … Continue reading

Bulgur: Natural Weight-Loss Food

This Middle Eastern staple sounds more exotic than it is; bulgur is what’s left after wheat kernels have been steamed, dried, and crushed. This cereal grain has been a food staple for years because it offers an inexpensive source of low-fat protein, making it a wonderfully nutritious addition to your low-calorie meal plan. High in … Continue reading

Why moralism spoils the appetite

Adam Gopnik makes a powerful and entertaining case for why we shouldn’t ruin the aesthetic pleasure of food by adding a side order of moralism. Kirk Leech Gopnik believes that, ‘Having made food a more fashionable object, we have ended by making eating a smaller subject.’ When ‘gastronomy’ was on the margins of attention it … Continue reading

The Miracle Noodle

My experiment with shirataki, the zero-calorie pasta from Japan. Annie Lowrey Shirataki In the past decade, pasta has slowly disappeared from many American plates, banished for its starchy carbo-load along with bread, rice, cereal, potatoes, and corn. But what if dieters could have as much delicious pasta as they wanted? And what if this pasta … Continue reading

Paella Party

Stop wasting your time with risotto. Sara Dickerman Maybe it’s time you stopped stirring. For a couple of decades now, risotto has been the go-to sophisticated rice dish for homes and restaurants alike, and cooks have stood by the stove with a spoon in one hand and a ladle in the other, tending to their … Continue reading

Tilapia Replacing Shark Fin in Soup?

John R. Platt  The unsustainable demand for the Chinese delicacy known as shark fin soup is directly responsible for the slaughter of more than 70 million sharks every year. In a process known as finning, the sharks are caught, pulled onto boats, stripped of their valuable fins and dumped back into the ocean where they … Continue reading

Which Countries Have the Tastiest MREs?

Heather Murphy For a soldier whose days range from boring to death-defying, opening and consuming an MRE (meal, ready to eat) is a reliable ritual. Its contents, created to last for at least five years, are meant to comfort as well as nourish. M & M’s are a taste of home for American troops, while … Continue reading

Julia and the iPad

Julie Powell For me, Apple purchases are always preceded by a bout of rationalizing. In the case of my iPad, I told myself it was O.K. to fork over the six hundred dollars because the device would stand in for the magical, Jetsons-style kitchen computer I’d fantasized about for years. And it’s lived up to … Continue reading

Top Chef, Old Master

Michelle Legro They called him “fat boy,” this seventeen-year old apprentice in the studio of Florentine painter Verrocchio who would receive care packages from his step-father, a pastry chef. The bastard son of a Florentine notary and a lady of Vinci, the boy’s doting step-father gave him a taste for marzipans and sugars from a … Continue reading

How to Say Challapeño

Macy Halford Pozole con Matzoh Balls. Schnitzel Torta. Totopos de Gribenes con Guacamole. Schmaltz Tamales. What are these mysterious concoctions? They are the offspring of the unlikely marriage of two culinary traditions—Mexican and Jewish—that turn out to go together “like a chuppa and a mariachi band.” Or so writes Susan Schmidt, the author, with her … Continue reading

King of the deep

Lobster fishing is the greatest summer sport lex Renton As sporting fishermen head north and west this August, sorting reels, rods and flies, I shall be fixing ropes and buoys and savouring last year’s bucket of rotten coley. For me, the pastime of plucking wild animals from the water is not done by flogging the … Continue reading

Snacks of the Great Scribblers

Wendy MacNaughton … Walt Whitman began the day with oysters and meat, while Gustave Flaubert started off with what passed for a light breakfast in his day: eggs, vegetables, cheese or fruit, and a cup of cold chocolate. The novelist Vendela Vida told me she swears by pistachios, and Mark Kurlansky, the author of “Salt” … Continue reading

Can food be art?

Helen Lewis-Hasteley Nathan Myhrvold was Stephen Hawking’s researcher and Bill Gates’s right-hand man at Microsoft. Now, he’s written a £395 cookbook A cutaway image of a pot roast from Nathan Myhrvold’s Modernist Cuisine. Photo: The Cooking Lab, LLC How’s this for a CV? Nathan Myhrvold graduated from high school at 14, finished a physics PhD … Continue reading

Eating alone

There’s nothing quite like sharing a meal with someone you love – yourself Tucker Shaw The Denver Post Cartoons by Moe Scance "Always by himself. Mr. iPod. He gets dangerous during the drum solos." (Moe Scance, The Denver Post) Conjure the image of a single person in an elegant restaurant taking dinner alone, and you’ll … Continue reading

Death in the Pot

Deborah Blum The following menu for a 1902 Christmas dinner party stands—as far as I know—as one of the most unusual ever printed. And also one of the least appetizing. Apple Sauce. Borax. Soup. Borax. Turkey. Borax. Borax. Canned Stringed Beans. Sweet Potatoes. White Potatoes. Turnips. Borax. Chipped Beef. Cream Gravy. Cranberry Sauce. Celery. Pickles. … Continue reading

What’s in Your Wiener?

Katherine Harmon Ball Park Franks: Mechanically separated turkey: As the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) describes it, this "paste-like and batter-like poultry product [is] produced by forcing bones, with attached edible tissue, through a sive or similar device under high pressure." Unlike mechanically separated beef or pork, it can be present in hot dogs in … Continue reading

Why Is It So Hard To Get a Good Bagel Outside of New York City?

Hint: It’s not the water. By Brian Palmer Why does New York City produce superior bagels? H&H Bagels, the most famous of New York’s many legendary bagel establishments, will close its doors on Sunday after 39 years in business. Some enthusiasts credit the city’s unique water chemistry with making Gotham’s bagels seemingly irreproducible in other … Continue reading

Food choices matter in weight control

Potatoes, sugary soft drinks among biggest sources of added pounds By Nathan Seppa If there was ever any suggestion that French fries are good for you, it’s now dispelled in stark detail. An analysis of data from three lengthy surveys that assigns actual pounds of weight gain to foods finds that fries, sodas and several … Continue reading

Chowderhead

The New York Times recipe that unmanned me, and also turned me into a man. By Jack Hitt I became a man, one might argue, the night I was completely un­manned by a cup of celery leaves. On a frigid night, Lisa, the woman who had just agreed to be my wife, and I were … Continue reading

Vegetarian Sausage

Which imitation pig-scrap-product is best? Juliet Lapidos I gave up meat (for the record, not fish) a little over ten years ago, but I still miss the sensation of tearing through intestine. This may come as a surprise to those readers with more inclusive diets, who may believe that vegetarians stop loving sausage as soon … Continue reading

Sheep Eats

Trying to get through a traditional Mongolian feast. By Catherine Price Sheep: It’s what’s for dinner One afternoon in Ulaan Baatar, Otgoo invited my husband and me to a traditional Mongolian feast. Otgoo, a friend of our host family, had given us tours of little-known temples; she’d helped us bargain for belt buckles in Naran … Continue reading

Foodies vs. Darwin

How Meat Eaters Ignore Science Cooking and savoring animals used to be acceptable—but then came evolution, genetics, and the study of non-human thought James McWilliams "No age has ever been more solicitous to animals, more curious and caring," writes Matthew Scully in Dominion: The Power of Man, the Suffering of Animals, and the Call to … Continue reading

Roast Chicken for Two, a Recipe

Step 1: Preheat your oven. Step 2: Wash chicken. Step 3: Have sex with your partner. By Michael Ruhlman Roast Chicken for Two Step 1: Preheat your oven to 425˚F or, if you have ventilation, 450˚F, and use convection heat if it’s available. Step 2: Wash and pat dry a 3- to 4-pound chicken. Truss … Continue reading

Incredible Edibles

The mad genius of “Modernist Cuisine.” by John Lanchester  Nathan Myhrvold and his culinary colleagues love to cut things in half—like this traditional pot roast—and show cross sections. In 2004, Nathan Myhrvold, who had, five years earlier, at the advanced age of forty, retired from his job as Microsoft’s chief technology officer, began to contribute … Continue reading

A Man of Taste

A chef with cancer fights to save his tongue. by D. T. Max Grant Achatz torching cinnamon. Photograph by Ethan Levitas. The entrance to Alinea, a restaurant in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago, is unmarked. Visitors pass through gray metal doors, go down a narrowing corridor, and arrive at a set of doors that … Continue reading

The world’s most incredible cookbook

At £395, Modernist Cuisine is the most spectacular cookbook the world has ever seen. Lifting the lid – literally – on the alchemy of the kitchen, it will transform the way we think about food forever, says John Walsh THE COOKING LAB Hamburger Cutaway You imagined that Jean Brillat-Saverin’s Le Physiologie du Gout, ou Meditations … Continue reading

Past Masters

What would an 18th-century pub landlord make for lunch? By Natalie Whittle What was pub food like in the 18th century?Mrs. Peckham, Mrs. Acton and Mrs. Beeton never met. The first was the author of The Complete English Cook: Or, Prudent Housewife, published in 1790, a cookbook you’ll need should you ever attempt boiled peacock. … Continue reading

The Gourmand

by Mark Gimein Images by Charlotta Westergren. Charlotta Westergren, Victory, 2010, oil on linen, 58 in. x 58 in. The story repeated most often in the gastronomical canon is Plutarch’s anecdote about the Roman patrician Lucullus. Asked if he might want a simple dinner on a night with no guests, the great gastronome orders up … Continue reading

A filthy night I’ll never forget

Catherine de Lange, reporter On Saturday night I spent an evening so brilliant and surreal, it’s hard to know where to start recounting it. Should I begin with the fact that I was sitting down for dinner in a Victorian sewerage pumping station? Or the moment when near the end of the evening, I found … Continue reading

The grass-fed vs. grain-fed beef debate

By Kim Cross, Cooking Light Georgia butcher Bill Towson cut up Cooking Light’s Alabama Brangus cow. STORY HIGHLIGHTS Shoppers are seeing more grass-fed beef in regular grocery stores Grass-fed has good, clean beefy flavor but tends to be a lot chewier Grass-fed beef is lower in calories, contains more healthy omega-3 fats (Cooking Light) — … Continue reading

With contamination in Japan, is sushi off the menu?

By Ian Bremmer By Scott Rosenstein Contamination reports out of Japan have prompted more than just Jeremy Piven to second-guess their consumption of sushi and other Japanese delicacies. With many countries including the United States, Hong Kong, Australia, and Singapore banning selected food imports from Japan, fears of a global food supply riddled with radioactivity … Continue reading

The Brainiac’s Kitchen

Scientist, foodie, obsessive: Nathan Myhrvold puts it all out there with his six-volume cookbook. By John Heilpern• Illustration by Tim Sheaffer Nathan Myhrvold, the likable multi-millionaire techno-nerd who founded Microsoft Research in 1991, is the only person I’ve met who has considered what a dinosaur would taste like. “I’ve thought about this deeply,” said the … Continue reading

Eating Healthfully

By Ellen Tarlin Six weeks ago I set out to improve my eating. Instead of focusing on weight loss and calories, I decided to zero in on health and habits and why it’s so hard to change them, even though most of us know the basics of eating right. I identified the five biggest obstacles … Continue reading

Saint Patrick Didn’t Have It Easy

… but at Least the Food Wasn’t Bad Shipped to Ireland as a slave, it must have been a cold, hungry journey for Patrick. But through her researches, Irish food expert Regina Sexton from University College Cork, has been able to recreate the diet available in 5th century Ireland to a young saint-in-the-making. UCC food … Continue reading

Miracle Berry To Prevent World Hunger?

By Kim Zetter Homaro Cantu LONG BEACH, California — Is a little red berry from West Africa the solution to world famine and hunger? Chicago chef Homaro Cantu thinks it might be. Cantu, executive chef at Moto restaurant in the Windy City and his new venue iNG, told the TED audience on Tuesday that miracle … Continue reading

Microsoft’s Former CTO Takes On Modernist Cuisine

By Mark McClusky Whether he’s searching for a malaria cure, a cloaking device, or the perfect french fry, Nathan Myhrvold pursues his goals with magnificent obsession. Photo: Art Streiber The perfect french fry—golden brown, surpassingly crispy on the outside, with a light and fluffy interior that tastes intensely of potato—is not easy to cook. Here’s … Continue reading

The Moral Crusade Against Foodies

Gluttony dressed up as foodie-ism is still gluttony. By B. R. Myers Image credit: John Cuneo We have all dined with him in restaurants: the host who insists on calling his special friend out of the kitchen for some awkward small talk. The publishing industry also wants us to meet a few chefs, only these … Continue reading

Does This Rabbit Taste Like Tires?

Road kill: It’s what’s for dinner. By Catherine Price It really was a good-looking rabbit. Shiny coat, sleek body, glassy eyes—only its mangled back leg hinted at its violent cause of death. My husband Peter and I had come across this rabbit on a trip to a bird sanctuary in Gridley, Calif. It was lying … Continue reading

Hosni’s Hot Arab Cuisine

KAL’s cartoon http://www.economist.com/node/18024045

Reinventing the Turkey

What Bon Appétit, Food and Wine, Saveur, and other magazines recommend you make for Thanksgiving. Sara Dickerman It used to be that the Butterball turkey talk line was the state of the art in Thanksgiving advice (and it’s still the easiest way, short a knowlegeable relative, to get someone to talk you down from a … Continue reading

How to Make an All-Instant Thanksgiving Dinner

Dave Mosher It’s the day before Thanksgiving, and you forgot to reserve a turkey. Or maybe you are short on time, or just really lazy and don’t want to actually cook the meal. Either way, modern food science has the entire turkey day menu covered: Just add water. We put together an all-instant menu, made … Continue reading

Deep Fryer Creates Golden Goodness in the Comfort of Your Home

Aroma ADF-212 Digital Dual-Basket Deep Fryer . $70 Reviewed by Christopher Jones Who needs BK, KFC and their greasy, fishy cousin Long John Silver when you can use a home deep fryer to cook up food in oil that hasn’t been festering for days on end. The Aroma Smart Fry XL Digital Dual-Basket Deep Fryer … Continue reading

Cook a Steak

Photo: Chris Jones/Wired Choose your meat There are many different cuts of meat, but the best for grilling include: ribeye, New York strip, T-bone, porterhouse, and tenderloin (filet). Of these, porterhouse and ribeye are the most flavorful (read: fatty), while strips and tenderloins are generally the most tender. Don’t be afraid of some cheaper cuts … Continue reading

Pomegranate Juice, $9.99; Truffle Oil, $25.99 …

Shopping for the most expensive possible dinner for two at Whole Foods. By Noreen Malone   With the economy still limping along, articles about eating cheaply, making dinner for less than $10, or fashioning a meal for seven out of Elmer’s glue, a single banana, and a pinch of nutmeg have proliferated. Even this very Slate … Continue reading

My Kitchen

FANFAIR My Kitchen: Alice Waters Proprietor of the award-winning restaurant Chez Panisse, opened in Berkeley, California, in 1971, chef Alice Waters is a pioneer and the foremost advocate of serving fresh and seasonal ingredients that are produced sustainably and locally. She is also the vice president of Slow Food International, a nonprofit organization that promotes … Continue reading

Become a Better Cook: How to Set Up a Grill and Cook a Steak

by Ian Knauer  Triple-Pepper T-Bone Steaks with Grilled Smashed Potatoes. Photo by Tom Schierlitz. We have been using the power of fire to cook food for a long, long time. Why? Because it works, that’s why. But there are some simple ideas and techniques that will elevate your skills above our Cro-Magnon ancestors, at least … Continue reading

Top 10 Grilling Do’s and Don’ts

by Julia Bainbridge  Do: Throw some veggies on there! Charred Heirloom Tomatoes with Fresh Herbs Photo: Craig Cutler Summer’s winding down, but there’s at least one big grilling weekend left. Bring on Labor Day! We received countless grilling questions from readers over the course of the summer, and based on research we’ve done to answer … Continue reading

Cooking Odd Meats

by Dave Arnold Czimer’s Meats, outside of Chicago, specializes in hard to find meats.  We ordered up some beaver,  yak, a whole raccoon, some bear, and a lion steak. Lion? Strange meat: 1) Yak meat was dark and fairly well marbled but felt tough. 2) Lion meat looked like pork and was very soft when … Continue reading

Down to the Last Cream Puff

Steven Shapin BuyAu Revoir to All That: The Rise and Fall of French Cuisine by Michael Steinberger Bloomsbury, 248 pp, £8.99, July 2010, ISBN 978 1 4088 0136 9 The winner of a horse race is the fastest animal, but in a dog show the best of breed isn’t the fastest, or the biggest, or … Continue reading

Stop Calling Them "French" (and 3 Other Things You Should Know about Fries)

by Katherine Kims. Yesterday we came across a portrait of a Belgian man obsessed with fries. Paul Ilegems, a retired art history professor, is not your average frites lover–one might call him a fried potato intellectual; he has written four books on the subject of fries, including a volume of poetry. Here are some important … Continue reading