Cooking Tips rss

Ideas, advice, and what to make now from the Chowhound community and CHOW editors.

5 Ingredients to Up Your Baking Game

Whether you’re baking chocolate chip cookies or a fancy three-layer cake with lemon curd and whipped cream frosting, the quality of ingredients can make a huge difference in the final product. By following a few tips from fellow pastry chefs, and splurging on a few ingredients (which is easy thanks to online specialty stores), your baked goods will go from amateur to professional quality in no time. Here are five ingredients that will up your baking game: READ MORE

Berries Are Back! Make One of These Amazing Tarts and Pies

Berries are a presence in the supermarket year-round, but anticipation for the summer berry season is still a thing. Turning those warm-weather strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries into tarts and pies is the highlight of our cooking calendar—here are five recipes we love. Serve any one of them still warm, with a scoop of ice cream or a soft, vanilla-scented clump of whipped cream, and leave the memory of the cold months—and bad-season berries—behind. READ MORE

We Learned How to Make These Perfect Meatballs

“The idea is to rethink the meatball,” Huw Thornton says. He looks a little like the Celtic gladiator in some Spartacus movie, only instead of wielding a sword today he’s using a chef’s knife to cut up pork shoulder, the first step in what’ll lead, eventually, to a meatball and beer lunch in the CHOW offices. READ MORE

Slow Cooker BBQ Beef Sandwiches

I guess you could say every slow cooker recipe is a crowd-pleaser. This one is no-fail. It has richness and a sweet-spicy-tangy balance that lifts it out of the sugar-fat dimension some barbecue is stuck in and into a field of green with birds chirping and Frisbees soaring just past your head. Let’s party. READ MORE

Do Microwaves Kill the Nutrients in Food?

Microwaves have gotten a bad rap for being unhealthy, zapping the vitamins and other nutrients out of food, and leaching bad stuff out of plastic and into your lasagna, but is that reputation deserved? The answer is, well—complicated. READ MORE

Slow Cooker Red Pepper Butternut Squash Soup

This week I was going to attempt a hard-core chili (no beans, no veg) but I haven't nailed the spices yet, plus requests for a vegetarian Slow Cooker Sunday have been echoing down the pipeline. I hear you—the meatball sandwiches from Chef Huw Thornton we all devoured in the CHOW Test Kitchen were fantastic (stay tuned for Huw's recipe post), but that was the final meaty straw. Time to slow down with a delicious vegan soup. READ MORE

7 Cool Twists on Homemade Ice Cream

For years, ice cream shops have been pushing the flavor envelope. Consider Secret Breakfast, a boozy bourbon ice cream with cornflake crunch (San Francisco’s Humphry Slocombe), rosemary–olive oil (Atlanta’s Morelli’s Gourmet Ice Cream), and sticky black rice (New York’s Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream). Likewise, the home cooks on Chowhound have not been content to stick to vanilla or chocolate when they drag their ice cream makers out of the cupboard. Check out these seven cool twists on homemade ice cream. READ MORE

6 Essential Tools for Better Baking

From French rolling pins to English copper cake molds, there are enough specialty tools and bakeware out there to distract even the most disciplined of cooks. Which tools are essential, and which are just for fun? It's confusing. Lucky for you, the number of tools that will give you a solid foundation in baking falls well below infinite. Behold, the six tools guaranteed to make you a better baker. READ MORE

It’s Taco Tuesday! Make These Pan-Fried Tilapia Tacos

Tuesdays: not as good as Thursdays, when you can drink and no one judges, but definitely better than Mondays. Tacos are a fine way to celebrate this less-than-worst day of the week, so from here on out, we will. Say hello to Taco Tuesday, CHOW style. READ MORE

Slow Cooker Chipotle Chicken Chili

Welcome to Slow Cooker Sunday! Plug in and chill out on what’s supposed be the laziest day of the week.

This rich, smoky chili is a family-pleaser for the Sunday evening when no one’s coming over, and there are leftovers for the week. With very few ingredients, it tastes more complicated than it is. The smoked paprika and chipotle exaggerate the richness of the chicken and make your taste buds sing. Sprinkle some cheese on top and a handful of crushed saltines. Close the curtains, turn on the projector, grab your chili—it’s movie night. READ MORE