bread and butter

What Are Your 'Kitchen Essentials?'

Jul 5, 2019
Wikicommons

Jenn - So Lael, recently you shared with us your top 10 essential items for the kitchen.

Lael – I did

Jenn – It was a great list.  I got to thinking, we have some sophisticated listeners on Utah Public Radio, and maybe they have a lot of those items.  So what about a list, maybe just a top 5, of some essential tools that you may not have in your kitchen.  Well let’s jump in and see.

Nothing Satisfies Like A Good Spring Clean

Jun 20, 2019
Karolina Grabowska / Pixabay

Every year or so at my house, it rains plastic containers. I reach up to the top shelf to stack those last few plastic containers and lids, but there is just no more room, and they come pattering down to the tile floor. That’s always the signal, as reliable as spring crocuses, that it’s time for the annual kitchen cleanse.

moerschy / Pixabay

Spring in Utah -- the grill covers are torn off with the first sunny day, then go on again for those late storms that seem to surprise us every year. By summer, we finally feel confident enough to shed the covers for good and get down to some serious outdoor eating.

“I’m Not THAT Allergic To Peanuts”

May 29, 2019
Iva Balk / Pixabay

Last month we hosted a dinner for a group of high school students … most of whom I’d never met before they appeared, ravenous, in our driveway. It was perfect weather that day not to allow 25 teenage boys inside the house. Soon the grill in the backyard sizzled juicy Angus hamburgers, salty franks and a few well-seasoned black-bean burger patties. A folding table was loaded with buns and condiments, plates of crisp veggies, creamy red potato salad, a huge plate covered with tiny squares of dense fudge … chocolate and peanut butter.

The Power Of The Drizzle

May 17, 2019
Pixabay - estelle heitz

You know me as a no-frills home cook. Just listen to me rave about left-overs or two-ingredient dishes. So, this may come as a curveball: In the last few months, I have come to respect the Power of the Drizzle.

Caramelizing Onions

May 11, 2019
Pixabay - Couleur

They are all liars … well, most of them are, anyway. Almost all the recipes stuffed in my grease-splattered binder at home that call for cooked onions indicate that it’s somehow possible to caramelize them in five minutes or under. Pshaw. It’s not possible.

To Haggis Or Not To Haggis

May 6, 2019
Christopher Pelletier

Haggis. You’ve heard of it, though, if you’re like me, that’s about as far as it goes.

Equator And Spicy Foods

Apr 26, 2019
pixbay

You may not know it, but when you choose between roasted red potatoes and curried rice for dinner, you are participating in a fascinating culinary phenomenon happening on a global scale.

Right On With Leftovers

Apr 19, 2019
Alan Levine - Flickr

I’ve been thinking about leftovers. Not the stubborn remnants of the casserole that turned out a little questionable even on the first go-around. No, I’ve been thinking of welcome leftovers. The curry that improves with time, giving bold spices the chance to marry and settle down. The chicken salad that tastes better the next day.

The Great Utah Scone Baking Show

Apr 4, 2019
pxhere.com/en/photo/935655

By now, those of us gifted at-home DNA testing kits over the holidays are receiving the results. And, if you’re a Utahn, chances are good those ancestry profiles show roast beef and gravy runs in your blood.

Crumpets vs. English Muffins

Mar 29, 2019
pixabay

In the United States, we enjoy many brilliant British exports … fish and chips, Harry Potter, Downton Abbey and Benedict Cumberbatch. But, we don’t have crumpets.

Two Ingredient Wonders

Mar 22, 2019
pxhere.com/pl/photo/1293838

Three little words: beautiful to my ear and rich in emotion. Three little words I just don’t hear often enough: two ingredient recipes.

Pixabay

Climate change affects more than just the weather and news cycles. Vast ecological changes are creeping upon us … like a slowly rising proof. And our food, so dependant on a narrow range of factors – including temperature, rain and changing ecosystems – is under the grim auspices of this slow threat. 

pixbay

If your doorbell rings this time of year, there’s a fair chance that it’s a neighbor, bundled in layers, bearing a cellophane-wrapped plate of homemade caramel or frosted cookies. It’s the season for these folks to make their way around the block, balancing plates and towing kids, sharing piles of chocolate dipped pretzels, almond cookies and gingerbread. It’s the Neighbor Plate, the Utah equivalent of caroling – with less crooning and more calories.

Should You Wash Your Raw Meat Before Cooking?

Oct 5, 2018

My mother-in-law and I had a long-running … erm … “discussion” about whether or not it’s appropriate to wash raw meat before cooking it. She thought yes … you should wash it for the same reason that you wash apples and cereal bowls. To get the crud off.

Honey: The Extreme Long-term Storage Food

Sep 28, 2018

Though known as the Beehive State, Utah produces less honey than its neighbors with North and South Dakotas pouring it on. What Utah does have is honey especially suited for storage, explains Maleesa Jacobsen of Cox Honey, a producer and distributor of honey in Utah for more than a century.

Farm-To-Table: A Sumptuous Feast

Sep 27, 2018

In northern Utah, we’re accustomed to a shorter growing season than warmer climates to the south. According to the National Gardening Association, Utah averages 170 days between the last frost and the first frost each year. Saint George is estimated at 207 days, while Logan clocks in at 164.

Cookie Crumbles: The Most Common Cookie Pitfalls

Aug 31, 2018

I can’t make chocolate chip cookies. Well, I can make them. People just don’t want to eat them afterward. No matter the method, ingredients or elevation, my cookies always seem to turn out too … something.

Who Discovered The Art Of Cooking?

Aug 24, 2018

There have been a few big moments in the history of cooking – in 1961 when Julia Child published  “Mastering the Art of French Cooking”; in 1718 when Mary Eales recorded a recipe for ice cream; around 800 BC when the Greeks introduced olive oil to the Mediterranean. But nothing can beat that moment 1.8 million years ago when a Homo habilis creature … we’ll call him “Greg” … let the starchy root he was gnawing on slip into the fire, rescued it, took a bite, and evolved into a human.

You’ve heard about studies showing the impact of consistent family meals on teen behavior: the more often they eat dinner with their families, the less likely teens are to use drugs, alcohol or engage in other risky behavior. Family dinners at least five times per week are also tied to higher grades, self-esteem and resilience in youth. Why? Is it the homemade pasta? The garden fresh tomatoes? Nope. It’s YOU.

Vinegar Pie: Straight From The New Frontier

Aug 9, 2018

One of my kids just finished reading Farmer Boy, the second book in the charming “Little House” series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. The main character, a boy named Almanzo, spends his days doing an absurd amount of wood chopping, ice cutting, and dirt-plowing, all without a word of complaint. … I’ve never known a nine-year-old who hadn’t perfected the art of the whine. My kids won’t even flush the toilet without a 50-decibel gripe.

The other day I plugged in my cell phone to recharge and felt a surprising rush of gratitude. What if this was how we gained energy, too?  Sitting for hours, tethered to an outlet? We’d probably twiddle our thumbs and hum 80’s billboard hits just to keep boredom at bay.

My favorite El Salvadoran food is the pupusa. To be honest it’s the only El Salvadoran food that I actually know. But since it’s the national dish it’s certainly worth noting. A delicious warming comfort food the pupusa is a soft corn dough filled with a savory filling flattened and cooked like a stuffed tortilla.  

Thirst: A Memory Of Being Really, Really Thirsty

Aug 9, 2018

When have you been thirsty? Really thirsty? We’re talking cotton-dry mouth, weak in the knees, with visions of bubbling streams and fountains dancing in your head?

Learn To Cook: Producer vs. Consumer

Aug 9, 2018

While waiting in line at the grocery store the other day, I overheard a young woman debating with her friend whether or not it would be worth her time to learn to cook. “Sometimes it seems like kind of a waste,” she said. I wanted, at that point, to drop my sweet cream butter and celery stalk dramatically back into my cart and grasp this woman by the shoulders “Why,” I’d ask her with an intense and penetrating gaze, “would you ever consider NOT learning to cook?”

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