Welcome to The Blog, the Serious Eats group blog for these troubling times.
Everyone at Serious Eats, from the front-end dev to the recipe devs, is helping to populate this page, which we plan to update as often as possible, even on weekends. We hope that any readers who come by will participate, too. If you have a question, find something interesting you want to share, or just want to drop us a line, email us! We’d love to hear from you.
The most recent posts will be published at the top of the page.
If you think you’ll be a repeat visitor, please bookmark this page. And to be 100% certain you’re seeing the latest posts, hard refresh your browser.
Vicky got a slice from Paulie Gee’s Slice Shop last night, and we’re envious as heck because a leftover slice from Paulie Gee’s would be a perfect Sunday isolation lunch.
Some Advice on Cooking All Day
Sho’s got a few things to say about Sunday cooking:
“I don’t know how helpful this will be to people, but I figure a lot of people will be trying to cram a lot of cooking today for the week, some perhaps for the first time, and since I cook a lot most every Sunday, I think I have some advice.
“Here’s the list of stuff I’m planning on doing in the kitchen today, and the order in which I’ve decided to do it: fresh alkaline noodles (6 portions); applying rub to ribs; sharpen a couple knives; bean and vegetable soup with bacon; jointing a chicken; chicken stock x2—ramen broth and general purpose stock; chicken adobo with legs from the jointed chicken; starting the ribs; gyoza; potatoes darphin to go with the ribs.
“I try to get all my vegetable prep done right at the start, so after I touch up my knives, I’ll prep the soup, the stuff for the ramen broth, the adobo, and the stuff for gyoza—the darphin is for dinner, so I’ll get to that later. This isn’t just to keep myself organized; it’s also because I use whatever vegetable scraps I can to fortify the general purpose chicken stock—ends and skins of onions and garlic, celery and carrot peelings and scraps, herb stems, scallion, leek, and flowering chive trimmings, for example. (Potato peelings aren’t great for stock.)
“Also, I find it’s important to prepare stuff both for specific meal ideas for the week ahead (gyoza, ramen, chicken adobo, bean soup) as well as general purpose items like stock, tomato sauce, beans, or noodles. I happen to have tomato sauce and beans (which are going in the soup) right now, so I don’t need to prep those today. The general purpose items help to give you some flexibility during the week, so you have a greater ability to eat things you actually want to eat, rather than being forced to eat what you’ve prepared. Chicken adobo is great, but sometimes you want pasta with tomato sauce or a chicken cutlet with mushroom sauce, you know?
“Finally, keep in mind that the worst thing you can do is overload yourself. Keep your expectations reasonable, and build in some areas for cutting yourself some slack. For example, for me, the gyoza is optional, a project that I’ll do if I feel relatively relaxed, or I can save for some other time if I’m feeling stressed. Once the vegetables are prepped, I can make the filling mixture and it can sit in the fridge for a couple days with no issue.”
Elazar’s got the right idea—make some cookies! And don’t just bake them all immediately: portion some out and stash them in the freezer, so you can have fresh-baked cookies when you need to stress-eat them.
Good Sunday Morning!
What are you all cooking today? Did you make something that turned out meh and need some advice for how to make that thing, but better? Wondering what to do with that half onion? As you putter around the kitchen today, think of some questions you think might be particularly useful to your specific situation, and send ’em on over (email us!).
Okay, who wants a Caipirinha? I mean, better use up those lines before they go bad. Plus it’s, like, 70 degrees here in Brooklyn and Caipirinhas are divine. So wash your hands and away we go, J.V. grade photography, typos and all. pic.twitter.com/DqRqIcNwxR
— David Wondrich (@DavidWondrich) March 20, 2020
If you drink, let David Wondrich guide you through the process.
Here’s our Caiprinha recipe, if you’re curious
Reader Tahra sent in this snap of Nubi. Nubi loves fruit of any kind, popsicles (pictured), and banana bread.
For those who’ve sent in pet pics, thank you! We’re gonna ration them for now, but rest assured they’ll be posted some time soon.
Lisa Kwon has written a fascinating examination of why a specific English dinnerware line is so important to Korean and Korean-American families over at Eater.
What’s With Delivery Apps?
*waiving the delivery fee but still charging the restaurants 30% pic.twitter.com/kVrebWAe1f
— Richie Nakano (@linecook) March 21, 2020
If this bothers you, try ordering directly from the restaurant you’d like to patronize.
“But I couldn’t think of anything more detrimental to public life, in my particular city, than a loss of restaurants. Eating out can be an afterthought, or a celebration, or a chore. It can be a bore. Or a routine. But when it’s gone there’s simply nothing that you can put in its place.”
Lovely piece by Bryan Washington in The New Yorker.
Restaurants Need Help
From SE Overlord Ed, who recommends:
“This very moving story, told to SE alum Chris Crowley of Grub Street, about Kim Martin-Flammia and Patrick Flammia, who opened up their dream restaurant, Chofi Taco y Birria, in Union, NJ, only to have to close it down two days after opening because of the pandemic. One fascinating and telling tidbit: Seamless takes a 30% commission. Shouldn’t they be waiving that at this moment? Reading this story made me call my representatives in Congress again to make sure people like Kim and Patrick are attended to in the massive bill being assembled as I write this. Tacos de birria, yes; Boeing, no.”
Good Morning from Italy!
Just gonna slide this video here, too:
Yup, This Ice Cream Looks Like a Butt
That’s it for today, folks. Hope this has helped in some small way. We’ll be manning the blog all weekend long, too, although updating it less frequently.
What’s for Dinner?
Here’s what the SE staff are planning on making for dinner tonight. Maybe you’ll be inspired; maybe you’ll be appalled!
- Daniel KD: “Lasagna, this recipe more or less, but with a leftover sorta improvised ragu from last weekend, which was just braised beef shins + pork ribs with some wine mirepoix and a can of tomatoes.”
- Daniel G: “I have a bit more boneless leg of lamb that had been in my freezer for more than a year. I roasted it two days ago with some fresh oregano stuffed inside, and have been slicing it thinly, eating it cold with a diced Persian cucumber, tomato, and avocado salad dressed with sumac and evoo. That was dinner the past 2 nights and will ikely be dinner tonight. After that, I’m gonna shift to some bean eating (gotta cook those beans still!), and maybe defrost a rabbit that’s also been hanging out in my freezer too long.”
- Niki: “I’m making Daniel’s sheet pan salmon with tomato-eggplant compote.”
- Paul: “We’re going to get a to-go pizza from the place on the corner.”
- Vicky: “I’m having leftover shortribs and mashed potatoes my mom made. She leaves a plate on my stairs, like I’m a prisoner.”
- Elazar: “I’m making pasta with peas and sausage and pesto which is… just my lunch, again.”
- Sho: “This disgusting meatloaf I made. It’s not actually disgusting, it’s just meatloaf is disgusting. That and some asparagus with sauce gribiche.”
- Ed: “Nova Scotia smoked salmon (there was no line at Zabar’s for the first time ever), cream cheese with scallions, on a bialy (toasted of course). It’s not cooking, I know, but it’s an awesome dinner.”
What are you all doing for dinner?
Maggie parachuted into our office to take care of our sad, lonely office and desk plants.
Plants, we miss you. If you, too, are missing your office plants, take a brief moment to remember their loving leaves.
More Dog Breaks!
We weren’t kidding when we said we want to see your pets!
Emily emailed us these two photos of her cute pooches, Riker and Ezri Dax, and dog-friendly pizza: a yeast-less crust made of whole wheat flour, an egg, and yogurt, topped with puréed beets, low fat mozz, and green beans/hot dogs.
Seriously, we love pets. Send us your pet pics! (Be sure to include some kind of snack in the photo!)
Colombe Offers Free Shipping
A suggestion from John Mattia, our video editor: Colombe Coffee has free shipping, if you’re into coffee that “has a nice smooth taste which some coffee snobs don’t like.”
Coronavirus and Food Safety
Kenji just published a massive explainer about COVID-19 and food safety, and it’s up on the homepage right now.
The Grilled Cheese Explosion
Here’s that grilled cheese explosion Ariel made on Twitch.
Never been a better time to embrace variety meats in variety (particularly the ones that benefit from looooong cooking, like tongue!)
We’re on Twitch!
duffman asks in the comments:
I find that when working from home I’m having a big problem with snacking. How about some healthy snack recipes so I’m not obese by the time this pandemic is over.
Here are the (verbatim) responses from some of the team:
- Paul: “popcorn?”
- Sasha: “7 almonds”
- Maggie: “veggies with dips (hummus, yogurt, tzatziki etc), dehydrated veggie chips, popped lentils, rice crackers”
- Maggie adds: “As all moms would say ‘why don’t you snack on fruit instead of candy?'”
- Daniel DK: “clementines have been saving me”
- Sho: “never eaten healthy in my life…idk, bread? with butter?”
If you’ve got any great suggestions, let us know in the comments (or email us!).
Call the People Who Work for You
This week millions of restaurant workers suddenly lost their jobs. You can help. Please call your Reps and your Senators. You can be connected to the capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121. Demand that independent businesses are part of the federal stimulus plan. #toosmalltofail pic.twitter.com/8gBIc0J2N2
— Kat Kinsman (@kittenwithawhip) March 20, 2020
Small businesses could use a hand, if you’d like to help.
Listen, if you’ve got a pet—any kind of pet at all—and you’d like to send us a picture (email us!), we won’t say no. Just try to include a pet snack or something in the photo.
Good Food Things
Feels like we’ve been thinking this/saying this constantly: Not all heroes wear capes. (Well, maybe Ruby Tandoh wears a cape! We don’t know!)
People are beautiful and food is good.
over the next few days i’m gonna be revisiting my lists of Good Food Things 🎂🧀🍳🍔🍍🍦🍇 will be retweeting the old ones and taking suggestions for new additions too if you think of anything fun. here’s part one to get things going 💫 https://t.co/4AeeepzNvl
— Ruby Tandoh (@rubytandoh) March 20, 2020
Apropos of pasta, if you want to peek inside the mind of a noodle maniac cooking his way through the crisis, have you met Sasha? (He’s probably going to put up a recipe for that mushroom pasta, but it’s all there in the highlights if mushroom pasta has all of a sudden for some reason become a necessity.)
Maybe Eat Pasta for Lunch
Elazar put together a list of pasta sauces for your delectation. If you haven’t planned lunch yet, may we suggest you do the carbonara?
Help! What Do I Do With All These Canned Chickpeas?
Been receiving a few pleas of this nature. ‘Tis easy: Mash ’em, simmer ’em, stick ’em in a stew.
Thank you, @poutinesmoothie. Thank you.
*pronounces COVID like Sous Vide*
— yeah ok (@poutinesmoothie) March 20, 2020
Overlord Ed passed along a helpful email sent out by Becca PR, which represents some well-known restaurants. Here are links to a few relief organizations highlighted in the email, if you’re able and willing to help out.
Food Relief Organizations
Current needs: $ donations, volunteers, shelf-stable foods, packaging materials, pre-packaged meals
Food Education Fund: COVID-19 Food Hub NYC
Million Gallons: support the food industry and fight food waste by preparing a million gallons of soup to donate in the next two weeks.
Hospitality Relief Funds
Gotta use those beans somehow.
we are entering an era of unprecedented recipe substitutions
— Shay Spence (@chezspence) March 19, 2020
The State of the Restaurant Industry
As seen through the lens of restaurants on the OpenTable network.
“Listen to that Crisp!”
/u/smelvin0 over on our subreddit provides a soundtrack to what is without a doubt the most popular Serious Eats recipe of all time: Kenji’s roasted potatoes, which he calls the “best ever” because he is both a master of the spud and of understatement.
You can almost certainly make this right now if you stocked up on potatoes.
NYT article about how restaurants are trying to survive as everyone observes social distancing.
From the Inbox
I’m looking for 1.5 pound bags of heirloom beans for my chili seasoning. I would want to buy wholesale. I would want the bags private labeled.
Yep, we get some strange ones. But we’re interested in this chili seasoning made with heirloom beans!
Back to the Land
Day 5: We have rediscovered farming https://t.co/tTrScYz6js
— Ghostwriter BLK SIREN (@MakedaMorrison) March 18, 2020
‘Tis a Time for Bread
Ariel Kanter, our director of commerce, has a partner named Gabby who makes some serious bread! Go, Gabby!
Daniel Dyssegaard Kallick, our full-stack developer, is also apparently good with bread! (He says this is the overnight white from Flour Water Salt Yeast: The Fundamentals of Artisan Bread and Pizza.)
If you want to join in on the fun, too, check out our guide to getting started baking good bread.
Bread! The staff of life!
Blogging’s Back, Baby
Some fine writers are food blogging, too, so bookmark the page and show ’em some love.
We (Re)Started a Blog!
Ever since the coronavirus crisis hit, compelling everyone, everywhere, to confine themselves to their homes whenever possible, all of us here at Serious Eats have been wondering how best we can help.
Business as usual isn’t going to cut it in these troubling times. Since we’re privileged to work in an industry that hasn’t been immediately decimated, and we’re sitting at our computers all day anyway, and because we, like you, are trying to manage our stress and fear even as we strive to maintain some sense of normalcy, we believe one way we can help the entire Serious Eats community as well as those who are stumbling on the site to figure out what to do with the 10 pounds of dried beans they just bought, is to enhance that sense of community.
This blog is an attempt to do just that. We hope this page will become a kind of port in the storm for you, a place to scroll through our answers to readers’ requests for help, interesting links, funny photos, the weird stuff our staff is doing to help blow off steam, ephemera, etcetera. We plan on updating this page as often as possible, so whenever you need a break from the avalanche of very serious news, you can head here for something distracting as well as a few handy tips for what to do with your impulse purchase of frozen okra.
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