Insights, tips, and restaurant reports from CHOW editors and Chowhound.
It is often said that many stews and other long-cooked dishes are better the day after they are made. This allows the convenience of cooking them ahead of time, which is especially useful if you're entertaining. Querencia takes this a step further by freezing such dishes. "You will enjoy the convenience of having the stuff ready when you want it because you can cook not only for tomorrow but for next month," she says. Her one caveat is that the texture of potatoes suffers when frozen, so avoid freezing dishes that include potatoes.
goodhealthgourmet maintains that dishes such as hummus and bean dips and blended soups, anything puréed that has multiple components and complex seasoning, improve with 12 to 24 hours of rest in the refrigerator. She explains, "Letting it sit for a while allows for a more harmonious flavor—you get a more subtle layering of the overall flavor of the recipe as opposed to tasting numerous separate ingredients that just happen to be in the same dish." Refrigerated dips should come to room temperature before serving.
It's a favorite among foragers. ... WATCH THE VIDEO
Those who like to grow their own cocktails and brew their own beer can now add another link to their DIY chain with the Grow Your Own Beer Garden kit. The kit comes with a plastic "sprouting and growing dome," dirt, and seed packets for hops, wheat, and barley. Plant the seeds, tend your garden, pick, and brew. Oh, and then drink.
Grow Your Own Beer Garden, $25
Bad things happen with low blood sugar. READ MORE
Salami is best known as part of a selection of antipasti or a sandwich ingredient, but there are creative ways to use it in a variety of dishes, as well.
Cherylptw slices salami super-thin and lays it on a parchment-lined baking sheet, then bakes it at 350 degrees F for 10 to 15 minutes, until it crisps. Blot with paper towels and allow to cool, then eat as a snack or use as the base for antipasti salads (Cheryl likes chopped roasted red pepper, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, and basil).
When fresh favas are in season, JoanN makes a favorite antipasto salad of raw favas, salami, mint, and Manchego cheese.
More ideas: Add salami to scrambled eggs or frittatas; try CHOW's Omelet with Ricotta and Salami; add to bread dough; add to minestrone or a fresh tomato sauce for pasta.
Discuss: How to eat salami
Sounds fancy. Isn't. ... WATCH THE VIDEO
Use a chef's favorite technique to get the perfect snap. ... WATCH THE VIDEO
Here's the bad news all you coffee addicts—hell, let's be transparent here, all us coffee addicts—have been dreading. If you drink coffee all the time, it doesn't perk you up. At all. It does prevent you from falling into a coffee-deprived stupor, but that's about it.
Like an addict who can't get a buzz without blowing through a $500 pile of powder, frequent caffeine users are victims of their own familiarity with their fix of choice.