1st Day of HTCE: Meat Loaf

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I’m giving away copies of the new How to Cook Everything iPad App, one every day until new year’s eve. Just sign up for the newsletter (look to your left) to enter the running. I’ll pick an email address at random and send you the App.

“Boiled Water”

Makes: 4 servings

Time: 20 minutes

This Mediterranean classic, as ancient and almost as simple as boiling, is the quintessential beginner’s or just- plain-basic soup. It’s one you’ll cook forever.

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Posted in American

2rd Day of HTCE: Meat Loaf

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I’m giving away copies of the new How to Cook Everything iPad App, one every day until new year’s eve. Just sign up for the newsletter (look to your left) to enter the running. I’ll pick an email address at random and send you the App.

Meat Loaf

Makes: 6 to 8 servings

Time: About 1 hour, largely unattended

Free-form meat loaf has several advantages over those cooked in loaf pans: It develops a lovely crust on three sides instead of just one, and the fat can run off, rather than become trapped between pan and meat. Plus it’s easy to shape by hand and always turns out in the shape you wanted. You can also shape this mixture into meatballs if you like; just bake them for about half the time.

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Posted in American, Behind The Scenes

3rd Day of HTCE: Pad Thai

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I’m giving away copies of the new How to Cook Everything iPad App, one every day until new year’s eve. Just sign up for the newsletter (look to your left) to enter the running. I’ll pick an email address at random and send you the App.

Pad Thai

Makes: 4 servings

Time: 30 Minutes

Easy to make at home—easier than you thought, I’m sure—and better than most pad Thai you’ve had in restaurants. Just make sure you have everything on hand and prepared before you start stir-frying, because it goes pretty fast once the heat is on.

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Posted in Behind The Scenes, Thai

4th Day of HTCE: Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I’m giving away copies of the new How to Cook Everything iPad App, one every day until new year’s eve. Just sign up for the newsletter (look to your left) to enter the running. I’ll pick an email address at random and send you the App.

Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes: 3 to 4 dozen

Time: About 30 minutes

These should really be called chocolate chunk cookies because that’s what’s called for in this recipe. (The chocolate chips available in every grocery store are disappointing at best and barely chocolate at worst.) For the most delicious results, buy a bar of good-quality chocolate (any kind except unsweetened; semisweet is traditional), chop it up, and mix it into the dough.

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Posted in Baking, Behind The Scenes

Raspberry Cabernet Sorbet

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Freya Bellin

It may be Winter, but frozen dessert never really goes out of season. Plus, with the holidays approaching, you might find this homemade sorbet to be an excellent choice for dinner parties. It comes together incredibly quickly, sounds (and tastes) impressive, and the flavors are bright and rich.

The recipe is somewhat nontraditional for sorbet in that it contains some dairy, although silken tofu is a good dairy-free option. I used plain fat free yogurt, which added a nice creamy texture without much of a yogurt-y taste. The cabernet is subtle but great. I needed the full 4 tablespoons of wine in order to have enough liquid to break down the berries, but you should keep scraping down the sides as you go to make sure the ingredients are evenly distributed and the liquid isn’t hiding all in one place. I kept my leftovers frozen for several days, and it tasted just as good days later. Feel free to get creative with the fruit – I’d try this recipe with blackberries, cherries, or a mix of berries, but you could also replace the wine with water and try pineapple, mango, or essentially any other fruit.

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Posted in Produce

5th Day of HTCE: Five-Minute Drizzle Sauce

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I’m giving away copies of the new How to Cook Everything iPad App, one every day until new year’s eve. Just sign up for the newsletter (look to your left) to enter the running. I’ll pick an email address at random and send you the App.

Five-Minute Drizzle Sauce

Makes: 4 servings (1/2cup)

Time: 5 minutes

Nothing could be easier or more versatile. All you have to do is boil some pasta or rice or broil a piece of chicken or fish, then get this going while it cooks. I’ll start you off with the base recipe—a kind of warm vinaigrette—and a handful of variations, but no doubt you’ll soon come up with even more ideas.

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Posted in Behind The Scenes

6th Day of HTCE: Chicken Adobo

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I’m giving away copies of the new How to Cook Everything iPad App, one every day until new year’s eve. Just sign up for the newsletter (look to your left) to enter the running. I’ll pick an email address at random and send you the App.

Chicken Adobo

Makes: 4 servings

Time: About 11/4hours

This Philippine classic has been called the best chicken dish in the world by a number of my friends and readers. It is cooked in liquid first, then roasted, grilled, or broiled. Here, however, the initial poaching liquid is reduced to make a sauce to pass at the table for both the chicken and white rice, the natural accompaniment. The coconut milk isn’t mandatory, though it does enrich the sauce considerably.

Other protein you can use: pork chops (bone-in or boneless).

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Posted in Behind The Scenes

7th Day of HTCE: Baked Macaroni and Cheese

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I’m giving away copies of the new How to Cook Everything iPad App, one every day until new year’s eve. Just sign up for the newsletter (look to your left) to enter the running. I’ll pick an email address at random and send you the App.

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Makes: 4 to 6 servings

Time: About 45 minutes

One of the most popular recipes in the original How to Cook Everything, which I attribute to too many people growing up with what the Canadians call “Kraft dinner.” The real thing is rich, filling, delicious, and dead easy. You can change the type of cheese you use: Try blue cheese, goat cheese, smoked Gouda, or even mascarpone. Or mix in some crisp-cooked chunks of thick-cut bacon or pancetta, about 1/2cup.

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Posted in American, Behind The Scenes

Roasted Thick Fish Fillets or Steaks

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Makes: 4 servings

Time: 30 to 45 minutes, depending on thickness

Some fish steaks and fillets—especially the triangular fillets from large round fish—are so thick they almost qualify as roasts, which makes them too big to cook by direct heat. Fortunately, the same sear-and-roast technique that works so well on other animals is perfect for large pieces of fish, and it’s faster. Provided you don’t overcook, results are crisp on the outside and juicy inside. And as a bonus, you get a quick little sauce out of the deal.

The best tool for this job is an ovenproof skillet—you start on the stove and transfer the whole thing to the oven. And if you don’t have herbs handy, just salt and pepper is fine. Recipe from How to Cook Everything.

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Posted in Recipes, Seafood

8th Day of HTCE: Pizza Dough

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I’m giving away copies of the new How to Cook Everything iPad App, one every day until new year’s eve. Just sign up for the newsletter (look to your left) to enter the running. I’ll pick an email address at random and send you the App.

Pizza Dough

Makes: Enough for 1 large or 2 or more small pies

Time: 1 hour or more

You won’t believe how simple it is to make pizza dough at home. And because the dough freezes very well (at least for a couple of weeks), it’s even practical to whip up a batch for one or two people and tuck the rest away for another day.

To make pizza dough by hand or with a standing mixer, follow the directions, but use a bowl and a heavy wooden spoon or the mixer’s bowl and the paddle attachment instead of the food processor. When the dough becomes too heavy to stir, use your hands or exchange the mixer’s paddle for the dough hook and proceed with the recipe.

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Posted in Behind The Scenes, Italian