Cook's Country August - September 2015

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.

United States
Boston Common Press, LP
6 期号


cook’s country

Dear Country Cook, In the late 1950s, our Vermont cabin had a fieldstone barbecue under two large apple trees, just up from the garden. It wasn’t used that often—the adults were usually enjoying sunset cocktails instead of grilling—but my sister Kate and I always liked outdoor cooking. It was a change in the routine, a bit of smoky adventure with heat, sparks, and sizzle. And, as the coals died down, it was also per fect for marshmallows skewered on long whips of apple branch, snapped from the tree above. Those were summers of corn silk smoked in corncob pipes, burn barrels, homemade peach ice cream, and pond water so cold it grabbed your breath. There were frogs and crayfish, brook trout and rabbits, woodchucks and crows. There were tree stands, roofless barns,…

ask cook’s country

The Color of CornmealCan I use white and yellow cornmeal interchangeably in recipes? Do they taste the same? –Sandy Smith, Deep Run, N.C. The color of cornmeal comes from the variety of corn from which it is milled. Besides the common white and yellow kinds you find at most grocery stores, some companies mill red and blue varieties, too. To see if there is a noticeable flavor difference, we made our Old-Fashioned Corn Muffins, Hushpuppies, and Easy Baked Polenta with yellow cornmeal and then with white cornmeal. With the corn muffins, a few tasters did detect sweeter notes, stronger corn flavor, and a slightly more delicate crumb in the batch made with yellow cornmeal. However, in the tastings of the hushpuppies and polenta, we did not find strong flavor or textural differences (though…

kitchen shortcuts

SMART TIP Thrifty Sifter Brian O’Rourke, Mercersburg, Pa. Very coarse salt for garnishes and baked goods (like pretzels) can be hard to find and expensive. So I’ve taken to passing Diamond Crystal kosher salt through a fine-mesh strainer, sifting out the small flakes, and leaving just the large ones behind. They aren’t quite as big as the giant crystals found on a commercial pretzel, but they are a big improvement over table salt or unsifted kosher salt. COOL TIP Smoothie Starter Seth Branin, San José, Calif. Rather than scrounging blearyeyed through the kitchen in the morning, I put all my healthy smoothie ingredients—yogurt, berries, seeds, and juice—in the blender jar the night before and then stick the jar in the fridge. Come morning, all I have to do is put the jar on the base and hit…

monroe county pork steaks

WHEN OUR EXECUTIVE food editor, Bryan Roof, recently arrived home from a visit to Monroe County in southern Kentucky, all he could talk about was the grilled pork “steaks” he’d found there. Spicy, tender, smoky, intoxicating— when anyone waxes so enthusiastically about a dish, I know it’s worth learning more about. The cooks Roof met in Kentucky begin by slicing frozen pork butt into thin steaks. The steaks are generously seasoned with salt and pepper and then grilled and smoked over hickory wood for a few minutes—or in some cases longer. The pork steaks get sopped continually with a fiery, crimson-colored sauce of distilled vinegar, black and red peppers, and plenty of lard, butter, or both. If you like it hot (as in, you like your lips numb), then you order…

on the road

Barbecue in Monroe County, Kentucky, is known (or rather not known) for being a little different. Take the ’cue found at Collins Bar-B-Q in Gamaliel. There, you won’t find the slow-smoked fall-apart-tender hunk of pork prevalent at most Southern barbecue joints. Instead, you’ll find slices of bone-in pork shoulder, cut thin on the butcher’s band saw and quickly grilled over hickory coals. The sauce, which doubles as the basting liquid, is atypical, too. Known locally as “dip”—basting or saucing is thus “dipping”—it’s more spicy than traditional barbecue sauce. Made with lard, butter, vinegar, and black and cayenne peppers, it’s thin, oily, and potent. It comes together in a tall pot that’s left to sit on the back of the stove where the oily portion naturally rises to the top and the…

kentucky white beans and vinegar slaw

KENTUCKY-STYLE WHITE BEANS Serves 4 to 6 We prefer the flavor and texture of Goya canned cannellini beans. Use the meat from the ham hock within a few days to flavor another dish. Our favorite brand of liquid smoke is Wright’s. 1 (8-ounce) ham steak, rind removed 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 1 onion, chopped fine 2 garlic cloves, minced 3 (15-ounce) cans cannellini beans, rinsed 5 cups water 1 (12-ounce) smoked ham hock ¼ teaspoon liquid smoke Salt and pepper 1. Using 2 forks, shred ham steak into 1-inch pieces; set aside. Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and cook until softened and beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. 2. Add beans, water, ham hock, liquid smoke, and ham steak pieces to pot and bring to boil…