Latest Post

More on Soaking. Sometimes, It’s a Very Good Idea.

by steve@ranchogordo.com in Clay pot cooking

I almost hate to bring it up because everyone has such a strong opinion about it but normally I don’t soak. Sometimes I do. I really think the best beans come from very low and slow cooking after a strong 15 minute boil. Soaking can help speed things up and some claim it helps the texture. I’m not sold, but I have no problem with people who insist on soaking, (Click for more)

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Books I Like

Near & Far: Recipes Inspired by Home and Travel by Heidi Swanson.
I was lucky enough to get an advance copy and all I can say is "wow". I think you will, too.

The Broad Fork: Recipes for the Wide World of Vegetables and Fruits by Hugh Acheson. A slightly Southern twist on what to do with all your CSA vegetables. I love the constant use of pecans, among other things.

The Art of Fermentation: An In-Depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from around the Worldby Sandor Katz.
Worth every penny. I want to ferment everything and I almost have. Nothing is safe in my kitchen.

Maya Lord by John Coe Robbins.
A great piece of fiction based on actual events and people. A priest and a soldier and shipwrecked and captured by the Mayans. How they react and the decisions they make are fascinating. A great slice of history that would be in danger of being too cute in less talented hands. This should be a movie.

In the Kitchen

In the spotlight

The Eternal Question: Bean Soaking. Or Not.

by steve@ranchogordo.com in In the garden

You know you’ve gone from casual cook to bean freak when you find you are interested in whether or not to soak beans. Like the amount of vermouth in a martini, nothing (Click for more)

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Ingredient Spotlight

Chili con Carne: Keeping Things Simple

by steve@ranchogordo.com in In the kitchen

The last of my conversation with Taylor Boetticher (The Fatted Calf) on chili con carne. We both are smitten with our mutual friend, Georgeanne Brennan and we discuss her (Click for more)

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