Author: Maxwell

Four indispensable kitchen tools.

This is a pretty simple and straightforward entry. But here are my picks for tools that any cook should own and that which will make all your meals easier and better prepared. I’d consider them the first step to leveling up your cooking beyond boxed meals.

  • A probe thermometer.

This you can use to precisely manage temperatures of things in the oven. When cooking a steak in the oven you can make sure it comes out exactly when it’s ready.

  • A digital scale

Digital/Analog. Whatever. Just having a scale allows you to more precisely manage your ingredients and your food. The minimal amount of math required to manage flavor is made easier with the metric system.

  • An immersion blender

Finally. You can whip together the ideal scrambled eggs. That homemade dressing will never stop being a colloid.

  • An infrared thermometer

There’s nothing more annoying than putting an egg in a pan and realizing the pan isn’t hot enough. Now you have to wait and your perfect yolk is not to be. This stops that. This allows you to take easy spot temperatures. This doubles as a toy for the cat.

Sourdough Part 2: Loaves

Sourdough is criminally easy and when you break down the cost it’s too cheap not to make yourself. For me, using the best materials, each loaf with time and money factored in costs around $1.27.

You’ll need a sourdough starter to make this recipe and if you don’t have one you can use my method to easily make your own!

Here’s what you’ll need-

Read more

Sourdough Part 1: A Starter

Sourdough Starter

I haven’t purchased a loaf of bread in years and I have been making my own with a sourdough starter that I decided to create and maintain. Overall it’s criminally easy and the products that you can make from a sourdough starter are infinitely better in taste and health.

But first you must cultivate a starter (which is much easier than it sounds). Just mix water and flour. Seriously. To take from Sandor Ellix Katz and his book “The Art of Fermentation”

“…mix a small amount of flour and water in a bowl, a little more flour than water, and stir until smooth. Add a little more water or flour as necessary to obtain a batter that is liquid and pourable, yet thick enough to cling to the spoon.”

Read more

Spanish Rice + Stuffed Peppers

Today you’ll get two recipes that make an amazing meal and will leave some good leftovers for those of you in the meal-prep crowd.

We’re going to make my recipe for Spanish rice first then add some ingredients and make stuffed peppers.

So here’s what you’ll need in two parts:

  1. Spanish Rice
  • 1 1/2 C. Rice (Uncooked, White)
  • 2 C. Chicken Broth
  • 3 T. of Olive Oil
  • 1/2 C. Onion (Chopped)
  • 1/2 C. Yellow Pepper (Chopped)
  • 1/2 C. Cactus (Chopped) [It looks like this in the store]
  • 1/2 C. Tomatos (Chopped, in sauce, you can use salsa as a proxy)

Read more

Faked Ziti

If baked ziti is a bastardization of lasagna then this is what happens when I try to summon lasagna through dark magics and the blood of the innocent.

With that being said this dish is a delicious and hearty meal for all.

You’ll need a pan and a large greased baking dish to get this one done.

Otherwise here’s the ingredients:

Read more

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

This recipe is pretty easy but it makes a delightfully balanced dish that pairs well with greens and ham. Serves about six and takes about an hour.

Preferably you will make this dish in a 2 qt. dutch oven but you can do it in a 7″x11″ baking dish.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 C. uncooked macaroni noodles
  • 1 1/4 C. Milk
  • 1/2 C. Butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 Yellow onion (medium, chopped, about 1/2 C.)
  • 4 oz. Fontina (shredded)
  • 4 oz. Medium Cheddar (shredded)
  • 2 T. Green Onion (chopped)
  • 2 T. Parsley (chopped)
  • 1 T. Salt
  • 1 T. Flour
  • 1 t. Paprika
  • 1 t. Chives (chopped)
  • 1/2 t. Fresh ground pepper

Read more

My Asian-style salad dressing

This one is very simple. Perfect for a chicken salad with some chow mein noodles or a stir fry.

Alternately you can use it as the dressing for an asian-style coleslaw (see also: coming soon)

What you’ll need:

  • 1/4 C. Rice or white wine Vinegar
  • 1/3 C. Vegetable Oil
  • 2 t. Soy Sauce
  • 1 t. Garlic (minced)
  • 1 t. Ginger (grated)

A whisk or stick blender

To make:

Add the ingredients together and blend until the mixture has emulsified.

A stick blender (or immersion blender) makes this immensely easier. But if all you have is a whisk I would suggest rolling it between your two palms as if you were making snakes out of clay to get the most whisk for your energy.