Cool Stuff – Food + Drink

Jello Eggs

It’s entirely possible I’ve lost my mind. But I prefer to call it investigative blogging. It has a better ring to it. I was talking to Grandma Pellegrini the other day about Easter, and food, and food, and Easter, and she started telling me about these jello eggs she used to make. “Wait, what?!?!” I replied very casually. And so she set about telling me that she used to use […]

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Brown Bread

A while ago I uncovered a recipe book from my great-great grandmother. It was full of recipes for brown bread. She was mildly obsessed with it I think. Maybe it tapped into her Puritan nature and she felt satisfied by its simplicity. Then a while after that, I got the latest edition of our family recipe book in the mail, a compilation of six generations of recipes from the family […]

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Duck Prosciutto

As you can tell, I’m on a bit of curing kick these days. I’m conjuring my Italian roots. It’s just that I had these duck breasts that were just begging to be turned into prosciutto. And I couldn’t help myself. Duck prosciutto is simple to make at home, and is a perfect way to store the meat when you don’t have time to cook it, and you just can’t fit […]

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Hell’s Chicken Wings

These are hell’s chicken wings. My darling skillet produced the hottest bits of food I’ve eaten in quite some time. My mouth still hurts. Surgeon Generals Warning: They will make you have psychedelic dreams. For example, after I ate these chicken wings I dreamt three different short stories that went like this: 1. My brother committed a murder in my childhood home and I had to cover it up with […]

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Irish Soda Bread

I’m 1/8 Irish. I couldn’t let St. Patrick’s Day go by without a nod. It is beloved by so many after all. It’s a passport to drink a month’s worth of beer in one day. And to wear buttons demanding to be kissed. But I can’t say it’s a holiday that celebrates my favorite foods. I thought about what to make for a while… and couldn’t bring myself to negotiate […]

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Homemade Bacon

The first time I saw a wild boar smoking slowly under the soot-blackened eaves of a dome-shaped grill I was mesmerized. I was standing 100 yards from the banks of the Mississippi, deep in the beating heart of the Arkansas Delta. The body of the pig was cloaked in thick slabs of bacon which were coated in thick layers of molasses and the whole thing oozed and dripped onto a […]

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How to Caramelize Onions

On Friday when I was showing you my adventures in thin crust pizza, one of the ingredients that I unloaded onto the crust was caramelized onions. And then it dawned on me that maybe not everyone knows how to caramelize onions… Do you know how? Do you want a quick little demo? Hm… I’ll take your silence as a yes. If I were to just go about my life throwing […]

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Thin Crust Pizza & My Biggest Secret

I’ve been keeping secrets from you. Well, just one wonderful secret. This is the woman who is responsible for my love of food: She took care of me when I was young. She would pick me up from nursery school and bring me to her house and sit me at the end of her long wooden table so I could watch her cook. She cooked every day. She still does. […]

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How to Cure Salmon and Other Fatty Fish

This is the time of year when a lot of your proteins are in the freezer, since in many places, it is the “in between” season. One of my favorite things to do in these months is cure meat and fish. If I can manage to do it before it hits the freezer even better, but you do what you can. Salt curing inhibits the growth of microorganisms by drawing […]

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How to Render Duck Fat & Other Important Matters

I rendered some duck fat and wanted to tell you all about the glorious experience. I plan on using it in all of my recipes, from pie crusts to steaks to milkshakes. Just kidding. Sort of. I made the rendered duck fat and have step-by-step instructions over at my “second home“… I just had too many boxes and filing cabinets and needed to spread out a bit. It’s much more […]

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