When I asked Nancy Leson about her favorite food websites she surprised me with "Y'know, Stein, I'm not a big food website person." Say what?!?
This from the social media queen who has teased me for years because I don't have a smartphone, Facebook, a Twitter account, or any of the countless web-based enablers of 21st century self-obsession - the woman who, if you clicked on her name, we see now has her own website!
In fairness, I should include that Nancy visits lots of sites, but only when alerted on her Twitter feed. And she loves checking the New York Times’ Wednesday food edition, both paper and pixel, for recipes. Well, fine for you, Nance. But on the off-chance that you, dear reader, don't know about some of them; here in no particular order of preference are a few of the sites I visit most frequently.
Andrea Nguyen's cheery VietWorldKitchen is a storehouse of reliable, clearly written recipes and thoughtful writing on food in general. I have all of her cookbooks, “Into the Vietnamese Kitchen”, “Asian Dumplings”, “Asian Tofu”, and her latest “The Banh Mi Handbook”. Stand by for her next opus unveiling the mysteries of pho.
Serious Eats is so popular, I'm embarrassed it took me so long to find it. Carefully tested recipes, easy to follow cooking techniques, and clever dodges to make good food better. And J. Kenji López-Alt’s Food Lab, in which he puts time-honored cooking wisdom to the experimental test. He's collected all that and plenty more in his new “The Food Lab, Better Home Cooking Through Science”, 5.8 pounds of scientifically validated advice.
Lady and Pups
My latest discovery is Mandy Lee's hilariously profane Lady and Pups, subtitled "An Angry Food Blog." Last weekend, I tried her recipe for Crusty Radish Dumplings and they were hands-down better than any potsticker I've ever made or eaten anywhere.
This week, I've started a brisket on the brine soaked journey to pastrami-dom using a method Lee adapted from Michael Ruhlman's “Charcuterie". I love that I'm getting what looks like a really good pastrami recipe from a Taiwanese/Canadian living in Beijing. Watch for a full report on this choles-ta-rama in next week's Food For Thought.
And The List Goes On…
Nancy pointed me to Food52, which looks well worth a peek. And I frequently drop in on Seattle cookbook author Cynthia Nims' Mon Appetit. Check her essay linking jazz and souffles. Molly Stevens is the author of two of my all-time favorite cookbooks: “All About Braising” and “All About Roasting”. Her Molly Stevens Cooks site is always worth a look. And hardly a week goes by that I don't see what Deb Perelman's up to on her hugely popular Smitten Kitchen.
Lets hear about some of your favorite food and cooking sites? Post below and we'll all be able to while away the hours reading about eating and cooking. And then, while away even more time actually doing it.
"A rich and varied menu is for people who have no work to do." – Roald Amundsen