Introducing the Culinary Content Network


The Daily Meal's mission is to be all things food and drink, but of course we can’t do that without voices from around the country (and the world). That’s why we created the Culinary Content Network, an invitation-only community of recipe writers, restaurant reviewers, food bloggers, and photographers valued by our editors for their insight into all things culinary. It’s our way of highlighting a really special and diverse collection of passionate and knowledgeable voices, so that The Daily Meal’s readers and other contributors can get to know them as well.

If you’re not familiar with The Daily Meal’s Culinary Content Network, you should be. You’ll find fresh content promoted daily on the homepage below the features section, as well as on the individual channel pages. What kind of things should you expect? Lemony Egg Rice Soup with Mint from Fresh Eggs Daily (Because Life Is Just Better with Chickens), saffron cocktails from Fun From Behind Bars, Sprouted Chickpea Bread from This Rawsome Vegan Life, Black Iron Skillet Chops with Mushrooms and Tennessee Whiskey Sauce by Twirl and Taste… these are just a few examples of recipes from the passionate members of the Culinary Content Network.

And their areas of expertise vary greatly. Some are connoisseurs of cocktails and spirits, while others show us how to infuse spirits into our food. Some strictly bake; others cook and test recipes. Some review restaurants, and others share news on openings, products, festivals, and more. The range of topics covered and the variety of information is a welcome addition to the content we here at The Daily Meal are trying to produce for you.

So whether you’re seeking out the best places to eat and drink at home or abroad, looking for tips on how to entertain around the table, or you need a little help in the kitchen, these articles take you on eating adventures around the world, bring people together, and help home cooks of all levels of skill to succeed.

Welcome, there’s a world of great food and folk to explore.

Tyler Sullivan is The Daily Meal's assistant editor. Follow her on Twitter @atylersullivan


Flavor network and the principles of food pairing

The cultural diversity of culinary practice, as illustrated by the variety of regional cuisines, raises the question of whether there are any general patterns that determine the ingredient combinations used in food today or principles that transcend individual tastes and recipes. We introduce a flavor network that captures the flavor compounds shared by culinary ingredients. Western cuisines show a tendency to use ingredient pairs that share many flavor compounds, supporting the so-called food pairing hypothesis. By contrast, East Asian cuisines tend to avoid compound sharing ingredients. Given the increasing availability of information on food preparation, our data-driven investigation opens new avenues towards a systematic understanding of culinary practice.


Early examples Edit

The earliest known written recipes date to 1730 BC and were recorded on cuneiform tablets found in Mesopotamia. [1]

Other early written recipes date from approximately 1600 BC and come from an Akkadian tablet from southern Babylonia. [2] There are also works in ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs depicting the preparation of food. [3]

Many ancient Greek recipes are known. Mithaecus's cookbook was an early one, but most of it has been lost Athenaeus quotes one short recipe in his Deipnosophistae. Athenaeus mentions many other cookbooks, all of them lost. [4]

Roman recipes are known starting in the 2nd century BCE with Cato the Elder's De Agri Cultura. Many authors of this period described eastern Mediterranean cooking in Greek and in Latin. [4] Some Punic recipes are known in Greek and Latin translation. [4]

The large collection of recipes De re coquinaria, conventionally titled Apicius, appeared in the 4th or 5th century and is the only complete surviving cookbook from the classical world. [4] It lists the courses served in a meal as Gustatio (appetizer), Primae Mensae (main course) and Secundae Mensae (dessert). [5] Each recipe begins with the Latin command "Take. " "Recipe. " [6]

Arabic recipes are documented starting in the 10th century see al-Warraq and al-Baghdadi.

The earliest recipe in Persian dates from the 14th century. Several recipes have survived from the time of Safavids, including Karnameh (1521) by Mohammad Ali Bavarchi, which includes the cooking instruction of more than 130 different dishes and pastries, and Madat-ol-Hayat (1597) by Nurollah Ashpaz. [7] Recipe books from the Qajar era are numerous, the most notable being Khorak-ha-ye Irani by prince Nader Mirza. [8]

King Richard II of England commissioned a recipe book called Forme of Cury in 1390, [9] and around the same time, another book was published entitled Curye on Inglish, "cury" meaning cooking. [10] Both books give an impression of how food for the noble classes was prepared and served in England at that time. The luxurious taste of the aristocracy in the Early Modern Period brought with it the start of what can be called the modern recipe book. By the 15th century, numerous manuscripts were appearing detailing the recipes of the day. Many of these manuscripts give very good information and record the re-discovery of many herbs and spices including coriander, parsley, basil and rosemary, many of which had been brought back from the Crusades. [11]

A page from the Nimmatnama-i-Nasiruddin-Shahi, book of delicacies and recipes. It documents the fine art of making kheer.

Medieval Indian Manuscript (circa 16th century) showing samosas being served.

Modern recipes and cooking advice Edit

With the advent of the printing press in the 16th and 17th centuries, numerous books were written on how to manage households and prepare food. In Holland [12] and England [13] competition grew between the noble families as to who could prepare the most lavish banquet. By the 1660s, cookery had progressed to an art form and good cooks were in demand. Many of them published their own books detailing their recipes in competition with their rivals. [14] Many of these books have been translated and are available online. [15]

By the 19th century, the Victorian preoccupation for domestic respectability brought about the emergence of cookery writing in its modern form. Although eclipsed in fame and regard by Isabella Beeton, the first modern cookery writer and compiler of recipes for the home was Eliza Acton. Her pioneering cookbook, Modern Cookery for Private Families published in 1845, was aimed at the domestic reader rather than the professional cook or chef. This was immensely influential, establishing the format for modern writing about cookery. It introduced the now-universal practice of listing the ingredients and suggested cooking times with each recipe. It included the first recipe for Brussels sprouts. [16] Contemporary chef Delia Smith called Acton "the best writer of recipes in the English language." [17] Modern Cookery long survived Acton, remaining in print until 1914 and available more recently in facsimile.

Acton's work was an important influence on Isabella Beeton, [18] who published Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management in 24 monthly parts between 1857 and 1861. This was a guide to running a Victorian household, with advice on fashion, child care, animal husbandry, poisons, the management of servants, science, religion, and industrialism. [19] [20] Of the 1,112 pages, over 900 contained recipes. Most were illustrated with coloured engravings. It is said that many of the recipes were plagiarised from earlier writers such as Acton, but the Beetons never claimed that the book's contents were original. It was intended as a reliable guide for the aspirant middle classes.

The American cook Fannie Farmer (1857–1915) published in 1896 her famous work The Boston Cooking School Cookbook which contained some 1,849 recipes. [21]

Modern culinary recipes normally consist of several components

  • The name of the recipe (Origins/History of the dish)
  • Yield: The number of servings that the dish provides.
  • List all ingredients in the order of its use. Describe it in step by step instructions.
  • Listing ingredients by the quantity (Write out abbreviations. Ounces instead of oz).
  • How much time does it take to prepare the dish, plus cooking time for the dish.
  • Necessary equipment used for the dish.
  • Cooking procedures. Temperature and bake time if necessary.
  • Serving procedures (Served while warm/cold).
  • Review of the dish (Would you recommend this dish to a friend?).
  • Photograph of the dish (Optional).
  • Nutritional Value: Helps for dietary restrictions. Includes number of calories or grams per serving.

Earlier recipes often included much less information, serving more as a reminder of ingredients and proportions for someone who already knew how to prepare the dish. [22] [23]

Recipe writers sometimes also list variations of a traditional dish, to give different tastes of the same recipes.

By the mid 20th century, there were thousands of cookery and recipe books available. The next revolution came with the introduction of the TV cooks. The first TV cook in England was Fanny Cradock with a show on the BBC. TV cookery programs brought recipes to a new audience. In the early days, recipes were available by post from the BBC later with the introduction of CEEFAX text on screen, they became available on television.

The first Internet Usenet newsgroup dedicated to cooking was net.cooks created in 1982, later becoming rec.food.cooking. [24] It served as a forum to share recipes text files and cooking techniques.

In the early 21st century, there has been a renewed focus on cooking at home due to the late-2000s recession. [25] Television networks such as the Food Network and magazines are still a major source of recipe information, with international cooks and chefs such as Jamie Oliver, Gordon Ramsay, Nigella Lawson and Rachael Ray having prime-time shows and backing them up with Internet websites giving the details of all their recipes. These were joined by reality TV shows such as Top Chef or Iron Chef, and many Internet sites offering free recipes, but cookery books remain as popular as ever. [26]

Molecular gastronomy provides chefs with cooking techniques and ingredients, but this discipline also provides new theories and methods which aid recipe design. These methods are used by chefs, foodies, home cooks and even mixologists worldwide to improve or design recipes.


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As food bloggers are well aware, recipe card plugins have been available for a long time. Most of these mark up data using Schema, making it easier for search engines like Google to read.

What you may not know is that Schema.org has data points for all sorts of content &mdash crafting, travel, even health-related things &mdash and we&rsquove created a card plugin that enables all kinds of publishers to utilize this concept in promoting their content to search engines and readers alike.


Upcoming Demo Schedule

Friday, March 27: Cookbooks and the Women’s Suffrage Movement
Guest chef: Bonnie Benwick
Guest speaker: Lisa Kathleen Graddy
Demonstration at 1:00 p.m. in the Wallace H. Coulter Performance Plaza, 1 West

Did suffragists care about cooking? As the Smithsonian celebrates the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote in the United States, the food history team along with guest chef Bonnie Benwick will delve into the role of cookbooks in supporting the Women’s Suffrage Movement. Benwick, who recently retired as the deputy Food editor/recipe editor at the Washington Post, will help us understand the similarities and differences between cooking in the time of the suffragists and today. The cooking demonstration will also illuminate the museum’s exhibition, Creating Icons: How We Remember Woman Suffrage. Smithsonian curator Lisa Kathleen Graddy will join us on stage to share powerful stories of women activists who helped secure the right to vote for women in 1920.

Please join us on the Coulter Plaza after the program for a special Objects Out of Storage event with rarely seen materials from the Women’s Suffrage Movement.

Friday, April 3: Melissa Clark's Instant Pot Secrets
Guest Chef: Melissa Clark
Demonstration at 1:00 p.m. in the Wallace H. Coulter Performance Plaza, 1 West

New York Times food writer Melissa Clark has helped countless cooks overcome their fear of the Instant Pot through her video series and popular book Dinner in an Instant. Join her as we examine key kitchen technologies and culinary techniques that have made the home cook’s life easier, and hopefully, stress free. Clark will share a recipe for poule au pot pie from her new cookbook, Dinner in French, that uses the Instant Pot to make this French-inspired dish both accessible and fun. After the demonstration, she will sign copies of her cookbooks, which will be available for purchase on site. Members of the food history team will direct guests to the FOOD exhibition to see Clark’s Instant Pot, which she used for testing recipes before donating it to the museum in 2018.

Friday, May 1: The Vilna Vegetarian Cookbook
Guest Chef: Joan Nathan
Demonstration at 1:00 p.m. in the Wallace H. Coulter Performance Plaza, 1 West

Our guest chef Joan Nathan is a renowned cookbook author and expert on Jewish foodways. During this demonstration, she will shed light on a largely unknown culinary educator and author, Fania Lewando, who lived in Vilna, Lithuania in the early 20th century. Lewando authored one of the first Jewish cookbooks dedicated to vegetarianism, The Vilna Vegetarian Cookbook (1938). Join us as we prepare dishes from Lewando's cookbook and explore the history of Vilna, the devastating impacts of the holocaust on the city's Jewish population, and one woman's efforts to sustain her community through food.

Joan Nathan will sign copies of The Vilna Vegetarian Cookbook, for which she wrote the foreword, as well as several of her cookbooks after the demonstration. Books will be available for purchase on site. Please note that there are a limited number of Vilna cookbooks available.

This cooking demo is held in partnership with the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, which will launch its latest online course, A Seat at the Table: A Journey into Jewish Food on May 1st attendees at the demo will be offered free registrations to the course, which covers the history of Ashkenazi Jewish cuisine through filmed lectures and cooking demonstrations by leading scholars and chefs.


The Culinary Couple Who Built a British Empire

The chefs Fergus and Margot Henderson have forged an identity for modern British cooking, grounded in technique and tradition. But will their legacy survive the divisions of Brexit?

The couple Margot and Fergus Henderson, married since 1992, outside her restaurant, Rochelle Canteen. Credit. Ben Quinton for The New York Times

LONDON — The young woman at the next table didn’t take off her shirt during the high-speed guitar riff of Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain,” but it wasn’t for lack of trying.

It was another raucous Saturday-night service at the North London restaurant Black Axe Mangal, and the music wasn’t even the loudest thing in the room. There was Kiss graffiti on the belly of the black-iron wood grill, the platinum-bleached hair of a line cook, Mexican-style flowered oilcloth on the tables and ropes of tattoos climbing the arms of the chef, Lee Tiernan.

There was the memory of the first dish: a shot of vodka for one hand, a shot of beet juice with a tincture of horseradish for the other, a bite of sausage and pickled walnut — a full round of shots and snacks, all on one plate. At night’s end, Cher sang backup to a deep-fried apple hand pie that arrived in a red plastic basket and dared to be even better than the McDonald’s version.

A couple of miles south, at the minimalist restaurant St. John, diners were finishing their marmalade puddings and madeleines in relative serenity. Just as the chef, Fergus Henderson, decreed when it opened in 1994, there was no music, no art, no flowers and no color anywhere but on the plates. There was a pleasing hubbub of conversation, a cadre of neatly aproned cooks and servers, and a smart but soothing palette of black, gray and white. On a plate lay a shining-fresh whole mackerel with a sharp glare, a perfectly plump lemon and a ruby pile of horseradish-spiked beets.

Modern Britain may be a nation torn by the political and cultural battles over Brexit, which took effect on Jan. 31. But in London’s food world, these vastly different restaurants and a host of others, all shaped by Mr. Henderson, still happily coexist.

St. John, which Mr. Henderson opened with a revolutionary menu of marrow bones, meat pies and pig’s feet, has inspired countless nose-to-tail dishes, expanded the definition of fine dining here, and helped build a generation of proudly British chefs, including Mr. Tiernan.

You may have to squint to see a through line other than beets and horseradish, but the influence of St. John on Black Axe Mangal — the respect for local tradition, the attention to detail, the balance and technique in each bite — is now settled law.

“Fergus Henderson is the most influential chef of the last two decades, even though you have likely never heard of him,” Anthony Bourdain declared on “Parts Unknown” in 2016.

It’s even more likely that you have never heard of Margot Henderson. A chef with two popular restaurants and a high-profile catering company, she and Mr. Henderson have been married since 1992. Their food is nearly indistinguishable: simple, elegant renditions of British classics, drawn from a local and seasonal larder.

Over the last two decades, dozens of young chefs have been mentored by one or both Hendersons. Taken together, the couple’s North London restaurants — St. John in Smithfield, St. John Bread and Wine in Spitalfields and Rochelle Canteen in Shoreditch — form a kind of Henderson Triangle that has not only helped the city become a culinary destination, but changed the course of British cuisine. There are other important modern restaurants in England, like the River Café and the Fat Duck, but none as peculiarly British as St. John.

They didn’t set out to revive any particular traditions. “I didn’t want to make nursery food,” Mr. Henderson said in an interview last month, about the stodgy classics that long gave British food a bad name. (Toad-in-the-hole, mushy peas and the like do not appear on any St. John menu.)

But in the early 1990s, he saw possibilities in potatoes and pigs that no one else did. A decade before the much-praised Noma opened in Copenhagen, Mr. Henderson was spreading the gospel of strictly local, seasonal cooking in Northern Europe. In fact, many say that Mr. Henderson wrote it.

“Literally no one was serving cabbage,” said Henrietta Lovell, a tea importer in London who works with chefs and tea farmers all over the world. “It was all kiwis and kumquats and tomatoes in January.”

To eat at St. John and its offshoots in the winter is to become intimate with turnips, beets and a dizzying, delicious parade of brassicas: cabbage salads, radishes with leafy greens attached, thinly shaved kohlrabi, butter-braised brussels sprout leaves.

“Everyone talks about the snouts and ears, but you can’t eat like that all the time,” Ms. Lovell said. “It’s the excellence of everything else that make you go back over the years.”

In 2005, for his services to the nation’s gastronomy, Mr. Henderson, now 56, was royally honored as a Member of the Order of the British Empire (popularly known as an M.B.E. M. I A. and Jackie Chan belong, too).

Since then, the legend around Mr. Henderson has reached heroic proportions. As the story goes, he picked up the sputtering torch of traditional British cookery, nearly extinguished by postwar rationing, frozen food and American fast food single-handedly liberated the nation from the culinary tyranny of France and Italy and led it back to a preindustrial paradise where each pig was known and loved, every fish was fresh and local, and no one ever got tired of cabbage.

There are several things wrong with this story, and the restaurant’s silver jubilee seems like a good time to correct them.

First, as Mr. Henderson is quick to say, he did nothing single-handedly. His longtime business partner Trevor Gulliver has managed the restaurants and upheld St. John’s quirky tenets (including an old-fashioned all-French wine list) since the rocky beginning. Londoners stayed away in droves from the drafty former smokehouse near Smithfield Market (the anchor of that city’s meatpacking district at the time, and just as deserted at night as Manhattan’s was).

“We didn’t know it then, but a restaurant develops a relationship with people and a relationship with a city,” said Mr. Gulliver, 66.

Mr. Henderson had little professional experience when he and Ms. Henderson met she had already cooked in her native New Zealand in Sydney, Australia and in trendy restaurants in London. “She made me a chef,” he said simply.

Her experience, she says, is why she was able to spot the genius in Mr. Henderson’s early experiments. “Everyone else was fiddling with chicken breasts and coriander, boning out quail and making food look like something it wasn’t,” she said.

They opened a tiny restaurant together in 1992, above the French House, a venerable Soho pub. When Mr. Henderson left to open St. John, their first child had just been born. “I was out of my mind with motherhood, absolutely gaga, but in a good way,” Ms. Henderson said. She left the restaurant world to raise their three children, now safely into young adulthood.

What to Cook Right Now

Sam Sifton has menu suggestions for the coming days. There are thousands of ideas for what to cook waiting for you on New York Times Cooking.

    • Do not miss Yotam Ottolenghi’s incredible soba noodles with ginger broth and crunchy ginger. for fungi is a treat, and it pairs beautifully with fried snapper with Creole sauce.
    • Try Ali Slagle’s salad pizza with white beans, arugula and pickled peppers, inspired by a California Pizza Kitchen classic.
    • Alexa Weibel’s modern take on macaroni salad, enlivened by lemon and herbs, pairs really nicely with oven-fried chicken.
    • A dollop of burrata does the heavy lifting in Sarah Copeland’s simple recipe for spaghetti with garlic-chile oil.

    For many female chefs, that is a career-ending decision, but Ms. Henderson never stopped cooking. Instead, she started Arnold & Henderson, a catering company, with Melanie Arnold, also a mother and a restaurant refugee. When the business outgrew their home kitchens, they moved it to a bike shed in the then-remote, now-hip Shoreditch district, then grew it into two restaurants, both called Rochelle Canteen. (The second is housed in the Institute of Contemporary Arts, in central London.)

    Arnold & Henderson now handles chic events like the designer Paul Smith’s recent 50th-anniversary dinner at Paris Fashion Week, and clients like Keira Knightley and Gwendoline Christie.

    In short, Ms. Henderson has done the improbable: At an age (54) when most chefs find their knees and energy are giving out, and in an industry that routinely chews through working parents, Ms. Henderson is becoming a famous chef in her own right.

    “What she does has so much complexity, but it reads as effortless,” said the chef Danny Bowien, a St. John and Rochelle Canteen superfan. His own explosively seasoned food at the Mission Chinese Food restaurants in New York and San Francisco is the opposite of minimalist, but he worships at the Hendersons’ altar of perfectionism through technique.

    Without leaning on sauces and spices, he said, they “know how to tame the fattiness of a cut of meat, but they also know how to add fat to something like cabbage, and make it all taste like itself. That’s much harder.”

    That apparent effortlessness has inspired another fallacy: that the food at St John isn’t a chef’s vision, but simply the rustic, traditional cooking of Britain’s past.

    “No one’s great-grandparents ate like that,” said Jay Rayner, the longtime restaurant critic for the Guardian, who devotes a chapter of his new book, “Jay Rayner’s Last Supper,” to St. John.

    He said the sound-bite version of St. John glosses over the fact that Fergus Henderson is not a farm boy, but a born-and-bred London bohemian, raised by intellectual parents on Marcella Hazan’s Italian recipes and Elizabeth David’s French country cooking. (Mr. Henderson graduated from architecture school before taking to the kitchen.)

    “He’s very much an art-school kid,” Mr. Rayner said, adding that the couple’s style “is actually a function of their taste and sophistication.”

    “You can’t separate the two of them,” said Kitty Travers, a craft ice cream maker who worked with them for 10 years and, like many others, is fiercely loyal to both.

    In another contrast to other British chefs of their generation, like Gordon Ramsay and Marco Pierre White, the Hendersons run intensely focused kitchens with a minimum of tantrums and a maximum of instruction. Chefs tend to spend far more time in the Henderson Triangle than is common in restaurant careers.

    That loyalty has only intensified as the partners negotiate the progression of Mr. Henderson’s Parkinson’s disease, which was diagnosed in 1998. He can no longer cook fast enough to work during service, but — as with many eminent chefs — his absence doesn’t seem to matter: He is still unquestionably in charge.

    Ms. Travers is one of a growing group of influential young cooks descended from the St. John/Rochelle Canteen line, along with the baker Justin Gellatly, the jam-maker Lillie O’Brien, the zero-waste advocate Douglas McMaster, and chefs like James Lowe, Anna Tobias, Theodore Kyriakou and Mr. Tiernan of Black Axe Mangal.

    Mr. Lowe, who opened Lyle’s and, recently, Flor, has made a mission of uncovering forgotten British ingredients like Alexanders (a variant of parsley), beremeal (an ancient strain of barley, grown in Scotland) and Stichelton, a veined blue cheese made from raw milk. (Stilton, England’s famous blue, is now made from pasteurized milk.)

    Ms. Travers no longer restricts herself to local ingredients. “I was always trying to sneak pineapple onto the menu” at St. John, she said, by arguing that Victorian-era aristocrats grew them in hothouses. But she does go to the source for ingredients, driving to Italy to pick out Amalfi lemons and to France for ripe apricots for her small-batch ice creams.

    Whether she will be able to keep road-tripping for fruit now that Britain has left the European Union is in question. And the national debate over Brexit has highlighted thornier questions — about what and who belongs inside British borders — that extend into the food world and, by extension, the Henderson Triangle.

    “I don’t think they set out to romanticize British food,” said Anna Sulan Masing, who writes about food and identity and is co-host of a podcast called “Voices at the Table.” “But there is this magical narrative with rose-colored glasses about what Britain used to be.”

    At St. John, that narrative does not include plantains from the Caribbean, pomegranates from the Middle East or pasta, for that matter. “They have their core ingredients,” Mr. Bowien said admiringly. “They’ve never wanted to take their ox head and put it into tacos, or start nixtamalizing corn.”

    Still, the Hendersons are trying to move the needle on diversity among their employees. Like most restaurant kitchens, St. John’s have long been overwhelmingly male. The Rochelle Canteens are largely staffed by women, but there has not yet been a female head chef at a St. John restaurant.

    The current chef at St. John Bread and Wine, Farokh Talati, is the son of Parsi immigrants from India, and the first person of color to head a St. John kitchen.

    Since Mr. Talati started at St. John in 2015, he said, few people who are not white and European have applied for jobs. “I can see how some chefs might feel they don’t belong” in a kitchen with a reputation for rigorous British tradition, he said. “I hope I can open the door on that a little bit.”

    He said Mr. Henderson and Mr. Gulliver were fiercely encouraging to chefs who want to explore new ways of cooking, like the pop-up Parsi supper club Mr. Talati hosts once a month.

    Black Axe Mangal began life as a pop-up. He left St. John to open it after 13 years, and only because he received a small surprise inheritance. “I thought I would be there for life,” he said. Like several other alumni couples, Mr. Tiernan and his wife, Kate, met as St. John co-workers. “It was family. It was home,” he said. (Insert here the sound of a tattooed metalhead trying not to cry.)

    Black Axe Mangal, which the couple opened in 2015, is certainly the least likely and most modern descendant of St. John. One of its lodestars is Mr. Tiernan’s homage to St. John’s famously unadorned dish of marrow bones with parsley salad.

    “We bless the bones with some braised oxtail and bread crumbs,” he said, then blister them under the grill. The parsley is loaded with anchovies, lemon, garlic, and vinegar-pickled chiles and onions. “If you look at it, it’s exactly the same,” he said. Not quite. The BAM version is arrestingly, almost indecently, flavorful.

    The restaurant is named for the late-night kebab shops that dot London, especially near Tube stops. A kebab on the way home from drinking is a hallowed tradition mangal is a Turkish word for “grill.” In much the same way that pizza has become an American food, the Middle Eastern kebab is a staple here, sometimes with local flourishes like French fries and ketchup-like “kebab shop chilli sauce.”

    Mr. Tiernan said he began to brood about kebabs as he worked at St. John. “At some point most of the mangals had switched over from homemade pita to ready-made,” he said. “And then when they switched over to tortilla wraps, it all went really wrong. You need a proper bread to soak up the marinades and the sauces.”

    Because working for the Hendersons opens kitchen doors all over the world, he was able to consult with Chad Robertson of Tartine Bakery in San Francisco about a flatbread formula.

    The result is a charred, bumpy round that forms an absorbent base for the ever-changing experiments that he drops on top of it: charred cabbage with shrimp butter, grilled onions with fresh cheese and pomegranate molasses, smoked cod roe and raw egg yolk.

    It is certainly not Turkish food. It is unrecognizable as British food.

    “I like the fact that we can’t be pigeonholed.” Like Mr. Henderson, he said, “I’m past caring how other people want to describe what I do.”


    Protein Denaturation: Unraveling the Fold

    When a cake is baked, the proteins are denatured. Denaturation refers to the physical changes that take place in a protein exposed to abnormal conditions in the environment. Heat, acid, high salt concentrations, alcohol, and mechanical agitation can cause proteins to denature. When a protein denatures, its complicated folded structure unravels, and it becomes just a long strand of amino acids again. Weak chemical forces that hold tertiary and secondary protein structures together are broken when a protein is exposed to unnatural conditions. Because proteins&rsquo function is dependent on their shape, denatured proteins are no longer functional. During cooking the applied heat causes proteins to vibrate. This destroys the weak bonds holding proteins in their complex shape (though this does not happen to the stronger peptide bonds). The unraveled protein strands then stick together, forming an aggregate (or network).

    Figure 6.6 Protein Denaturation

    When a protein is exposed to a different environment, such as increased temperature, it unfolds into a single strand of amino acids.


    ‘Recipes are dead’: What the future of cooking might look like

    There will be no more cookbooks from chef Tyler Florence. Sure, you’ve welcomed him into your home through his books “Tyler Florence Fresh” and “Dinner at My Place,” and his Food Network shows like “Tyler’s Ultimate.” But he will not print any more recipes. Why bother?

    “I’ll publish a cookbook and I’ll have 125 recipes. People only use five,” he said. And they won’t even follow them: “They’ll use those as like a guide that they’ll kind of interchange different ingredients with.”

    All of this has led Florence to a conclusion that seems unusual for a person who has spent his career producing recipes. “Recipes are dead,” said Florence. “They’re dead the same way paper maps are dead.”

    Think about it: Maps help you find your destination, but it’s still pretty easy to get lost. But now we have GPS, which can precisely guide us to our location, automatically reroute us to avoid obstacles and tell us where to find gas or a sandwich along the way.

    At the Smart Kitchen Summit in October, Florence announced that he had signed on with what he says will be the kitchen equivalent of GPS. He joined Innit, a start-up building a "connected food platform" — connecting the smart kitchen with software that aims to personalize and automate cooking. The company's newly released app, the thing Florence thinks will be a recipe-killer, promises highly customizable "micro-cooking content." It will offer thousands of permutations of meals, and it could preheat your oven, too. Eventually, it could go further — perhaps suggesting foods based on your genetic profile or how many steps your fitness tracker registered that day. It might be able to order your groceries or help you build your own meal kit. Someday, it might even know the entire contents of your fridge.

    />
    The Innit app includes video instruction for its customizable meals. (Innit )

    The drive for customization

    We have been writing recipes down for thousands of years. Yale University's Babylonian Collection contains some of the world's oldest, carved into three tablets from approximately 1700 B.C. "Instructions call for most of the food to be prepared with water and fats, and to simmer for a long time in a covered pot," wrote the New York Times.

    And recipes were similarly vague for the next few thousand years, because technique was something you learned from your mother. They'd call for "a piece of butter" or "more apples than onions," but no quantities. Scientific precision entered the kitchen near the turn of the 20th century, introducing measurement, substitutions, calorie count and instruction.

    The way we find and store recipes has evolved, too. Who among us hasn’t walked past a shelf of cookbooks while scrolling through Pinterest? But while the content on Epicurious or Allrecipes.com is easier to search, its recipes are still fixed entities. You can improvise, but you’re on your own.

    Meanwhile, consumers have grown to expect customization. Consider Cava Mezze rice bowls or Sweetgreen salads or the vast array of poke toppings at other fast-casual restaurants. It's a premise thoroughly embraced by millennials: Choose your protein, some vegetables, some sides, and some sauces or garnishes.

    That’s how Innit’s eponymous app will work, too, but it’s more elaborate. First, you input some basic information — whether you’re allergic to shellfish or on the Paleo Diet. Then you pick a style of dish, like pasta or a grain bowl, select from an array of ingredients, and Innit will configure a recipe — er, some micro-cooking content — for you. It’s launching with a couple of broad templates — a few swipes will transform a chicken taco to a beet-pineapple salsa lettuce wrap, for example — with more to come. Florence’s flavor profiles keep the meals from becoming an episode of “Chopped.”

    It’s about giving users “great combinations that are somewhat guardrailed,” said Joshua Sigel, Innit’s chief operating officer. “If they want to, we jokingly say, add Thai peanut sauce on top of a cupcake, that’s [their] prerogative.”

    It might remind you of another experiment in futuristic recipes: IBM's Chef Watson. The computer program analyzed thousands of recipes, as well as data on the chemical compounds in food, to create flavor combinations encouraged by "computer-assisted creativity," said Florian Pinel, a master inventor and trained chef who worked on Watson.

    Though Chef Watson was originally intended to aid professional chefs, plenty of customers were more interested in menu variety than dish creativity, Pinel said. “Something that’s different from the other nights, but not wildly different something that fits your dietary constraints or helps reduce food waste.”

    Pinel says the company is no longer updating Chef Watson — though it may explore some nutrition or smart kitchen projects with the program in the future. A consumer-facing site, in partnership with Bon Appétit, remains active.

    The difference between Innit and Watson is that the former will not only design a meal for you, it will also walk you through how to make it with a video stitched together from hundreds of techniques that Florence filmed in the Innit offices. The steps are resequenced and times and nutritional information update dynamically as you swap ingredients in and out. The app will also operate certain smart appliances, and there’s more automation to come. Florence contends the app can even help novices learn how to cook.

    “This is your sous-chef in the kitchen, and if you go along with the guidance, it’s going to help you get it right,” Florence said.

    Teaching your appliances to cook

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    The Innit app can control some smart ovens. (Innit )

    The recipes of the future won’t just be instructions for people. They’ll be instructions for appliances. Our devices will know more about how we cook.

    It's the concept of "the Internet of actions," said Sarah Smith, research director of the Food Futures Lab at the Institute for the Future. First, the Internet connected us with information, and now, our objects can supply that information. The next step is for objects to perform tasks. After all, "a recipe is a series of instructions to take action," Smith said. "The role of the recipe . . . becomes even more important when it's fed into kitchen systems that are acting on your behalf."

    Bridge Kitchen, a forthcoming app, will eventually walk users through recipes by listening to what's happening in their kitchen. Yes, you can call out to the app to ask how much paprika you need, but the company promises it will also hear audio cues to know where you are in the recipe — the sounds of chopping, or the sizzle of a frying pan. Those will encourage the app to automatically move to the next step, such as setting a timer or preheating your oven.

    “For high-temperature stuff like searing, where you need to very carefully control the amount of time, we can synchronize a timer to the moment that searing sound starts,” said Arun Bahl, the company’s founder and chief executive. It raises privacy concerns, but Bahl says the audio is analyzed by software within the app, not on the cloud, and is deleted afterward. Bahl also says the app will help you time out multiple recipes so they can be completed at the same time. He is also working toward a feature that would allow users to take a photo of any cookbook recipe, whose text would be automatically incorporated into the app.

    What food-tech companies are working toward is a vision of the future in which our digital assistants, appliances and health data are unified into a system that makes decisions seamlessly, guiding us to healthy choices and less food waste. It would look something like this: Midday, your phone's personal assistant pings you with a few options for dinner. It knows that you went for a long run this morning and also that you're a bit iron-deficient, because you supplied data from a company such as Habit, which uses DNA samples to suggest a personal nutrition profile. It also would know that you have chicken and kale in your fridge via sensors or computer vision — and that you should use the kale up soon. The meal you select calls for chickpeas and a few other ingredients you don't have, so your phone automatically orders them from a grocery delivery service. Your phone has already preheated the oven, too. Your pan will monitor its own temperature so you don't burn anything. Cooking will be automated, but not too automated.

    “It’s the Ikea furniture effect: People have an irrational attachment to furniture they’ve helped to build,” Bahl said. “We need to still give them a role.”

    />
    Chef-authors Yotam Ottolenghi, left, and Sami Tamimi at The Post to promote the cookbook “Ottolenghi” in 2012. (Deb Lindsey/For The Washington Post)

    ‘We need sources of pleasure’

    New-wave recipe apps target kitchen-shy millennials and harried moms — not people who live and breathe cooking. With their never-ending permutations of unfussy, healthy meals, they're intended to break up the monotony of weekday cooking, not to help you make a showstopping holiday dinner. For that, we have cookbooks — which, despite Florence's pronouncement, are holding strong. Cookbook sales were up 6 percent in 2016 over the previous year, Publishers Weekly reported. And most cookbook sales are print books e-book sales are a minuscule part of the category. Maybe it's because people are afraid to have pricey screens near hot oil — or that they find books easier to navigate: Dog-ear your favorite pages, and they'll always be at your fingertips.

    “Cookbooks are getting more and more tactile, with special flourishes on the cover and inside pages. They’re just getting more cookbooky,” said Rux Martin, editorial director of Rux Martin Books for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, who called recipe apps “just a blip in consciousness.” (Florence, naturally, disagrees: “A cookbook is an iPad with a screen that doesn’t work.”)

    But it's also because cookbooks aren't merely reference. They're aspirational. We want to be the kind of person who cooks her entire way through "The French Laundry Cookbook," even if we manage only one recipe. A cookbook is like a New Year's resolution: a commitment to a better version of yourself. You know you might fall short, but it's the promise that counts.

    So recipes may be dead in the eyes of Silicon Valley, but Martin suspects they aren’t going anywhere. The apps are practical, but will they make us swoon the way an Ottolenghi book does?

    “Efficiency takes all the pleasure out of the kitchen,” Martin said. “We have enough recipes in the world. We don’t need new recipes. We need sources of pleasure.”


    The Certified Culinary Medicine Specialist (CCMS) Program

    The Certified Culinary Medicine Specialist (CCMS) designation identifies clinicians who have a unique foundation for incorporating healthy eating into patients’ diets: comprehensive knowledge of nutrition and the culinary techniques to prepare food that is consistent with real-world budgets, time constraints, and nutritional ideals. Physicians, Physicians Assistants, Pharmacists, Registered Dietitians and Nurse Practitioners are eligible for certification. The hybrid 60-credit curriculum includes a distinctive combination of online nutrition education courses, live conferences, and in-person attendance at hands-on teaching kitchen modules.By completing the program, clinicians will enhance their confidence and quality of care by learning how to:
    • Integrate nutritional counseling to supplement pharmacological treatment
    • Educate patients about weight loss and weight management
    • Develop practical examination-room dialogues that inspire behavioral change
    • Implement new strategies in even the busiest primary care offices

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