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Cook's Country

Cook's Country June/July 2019

Cook's Country magazine is dedicated to honest-to-goodness American home cooking, offering quick, easy and satisfying meals that don't take hours to put on the table. Every recipe we publish has been tested and retested 20, 30, sometimes 50 times until we come up with a recipe that will work the first time and every time you make it. And each issue of Cook's Country is 100% ADVERTISING FREE, so you get unbiased and objective information on every page.

Land:
United States
Sprache:
English
Verlag:
Boston Common Press, LP
Erscheinungsweise:
Bimonthly
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2 Min.
letter from the editor

HAVE YOU EVER used one of our recipe cards? The ones you find in the middle of every issue? I hope you have. To me, they represent some of our very best work. Each of the recipes on those tear-out cards is designed with speed and ease in mind. The cooks who develop them are limited to 10 ingredients (not including kitchen staples such as salt and pepper) and 30 minutes of cooking time, and they aim to minimize the dirty dishes. But these parameters don’t mean that the recipes get a pass on the rigorous testing we’re known for. The recipe cards have to clear the same gauntlet of diligence and scrutiny that all our recipes do—often dozens of tests, weeks of refinements, and the occasional one-way ticket to the trash…

3 Min.
ask cook’s country

Going Against the Grain Recipes often call for slicing beef against the grain, but I don’t understand what this means or how to do it. Can you please clarify? –Bridgette Holmes, New York, N.Y. If you look closely at a piece of beef, you’ll notice little lines—bundles of closely packed muscle fibers that run parallel to one another. This pattern of fibers is referred to as the “grain” because it looks similar to the grain on a piece of wood. When recipes call for slicing meat against (or across) the grain, it means you slice it perpendicular to the fibers instead of parallel to them. If you think of the fibers as a handful of dry spaghetti, you want to cut the bundle of spaghetti into shorter sections. This is important because shorter lengths…

1 Min.
a mediterranean mix

I love your recipe for homemade Italian seasoning. Could you create a recipe for homemade Greek seasoning? –Cheryl James, Streetsboro, Ohio Aiming to please, we ordered in several Greek seasoning mixes and were surprised to find how different they were. Some were just mixtures of herbs, others were dominated by onion, and still others included warm spices such as nutmeg and cinnamon. We wanted a lemony, herb-heavy blend that would be great mixed into vinaigrette, added to marinades for chicken or lamb, or simply sprinkled over rice. Here’s our version. HOMEMADE GREEK SEASONIG Makes about ¼ cup One lemon yields 1 tablespoon of zest. We love this seasoning in salad dressings and on feta cheese, baked potatoes, or grilled chicken. 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest2 tablespoons dried oregano1 teaspoon table salt1 teaspoon pepper1 teaspoon garlic…

1 Min.
kitchen shortcuts

Gloomy Grilling –Amber Nelson, Pensacola, Fla. As a die-hard griller, I don’t let rainy days stop me from cooking outside—especially when I’m slow-smoking meat on a covered grill. The grill lid protects the meat and fire from the rain but not my probe thermometer/timer. I just throw it in a zipper-lock bag and snake the probe through the mostly sealed top. Bad weather is no match for a little ingenuity! Just Chillin’ –Sharon Norman, Sunbury, Ohio Your equipment review of ice packs reminded me of a trick I use to make more effcient use of cooler space—and to avoid buying ice packs. I fill empty plastic soda bottles—large and small—with water, iced tea, or juice (leaving some space at the top to allow the frozen liquid to expand) and freeze them. The frozen bottles keep…

1 Min.
when tasting ketchup, is familiar better?

THERE’S NO DENYING it: Americans love ketchup. Ketchup hits all five basic tastes: salty, sweet, sour, bitter, and umami. And it’s more than just a condiment. In the test kitchen, we add ketchup not just to meatloaf glazes and barbecue sauces but also to more surprising dishes such as tacos and stuffed peppers. Heinz has dominated the market for decades, but since our last tasting, two major condiment companies, Hellmann’s and French’s, have started manufacturing ketchup. Meanwhile, small companies have gained traction with American shoppers looking for “artisan” alternatives. How do these new options stack up to their more familiar counterparts? To find out, we purchased eight top-selling ketchups and compared them in two blind taste tests, plain and with French fries. Every ketchup was bright and tangy enough for our tasters.…

4 Min.
texas-style smoked beef ribs

TEXAS-STYLE BEEF RIBS are intimidating—so big they look like they came off a T. rex. But fans know that beneath the dark, peppery crust and pink smoke ring is succulently tender beef so flavorful that barbecue sauce is unnecessary (and, in some corners, verboten). You think brisket lovers are committed? Wait till you meet a smoked beef rib enthusiast. I’m specifically referring to beef plate ribs, the meatiest ribs on the steer. They are marbled with fat and collagen; over low, slow heat, they achieve a tender, juicy texture. They are rarely available prepackaged, so I had to start with a special order at the butcher (see “Buy the Right [Very Big!] Ribs”). There is no universal code for how butchers cut plate ribs, so I gave strict specs to my butcher:…