Itching for a trip abroad, but lacking the requisite vacation time? Quell your wanderlust the next best way — by cooking your way through the cuisine of another culture via an international cookbook. With options ranging from collections of homey British recipes to a book based on modern Persian cuisine, chances are there's an option that'll be right up your alley; keep reading for our top picks.
Most of us get excited about trying out international dishes, but the same can't be said for kitchen utensils from around the world. Not only are we often clueless about what they are or what they do, but it also seems futile to buy a tool with only one use. But many of these exotic implements can serve several different purposes. To help you out, we've put together seven valuable tools you might not even know exist!
Oktoberfest is in full force for the 179th year in a row, and while it may not be feasible to fly to Munich right now, you can still bring a bit of Germany to your dinner plate. As I discovered on my recent trip to Deutschland with the German Wine Institute, the country is full of rich culinary traditions, many of which have made their way to the rest of the world. Take a look at some of Germany's most iconic food and drink specialties.
Curious to find out if British drugstore sweet treats had much to boast beyond their novelty factor, we set out to sample nearly two dozen varieties. While some were doozies — one candy prompted the exclamation that "it tastes like I licked an old lady" — we found some delightful new favorites and a few improved versions of American analogues. Find out what we'll be buying in bulk.
We're daydreaming of a trip to the land of pasta and prosciutto, but we don't yet have a trip to the continent on the books. Until then, we'll play virtual tourist. So follow along, but fair warning: this roundup of quintessential Italian treats is sure to cause tortuous hunger pangs.
Believe it or not, tomorrow marks what would have been Julia Child's 100th birthday, a momentous date to be sure. Of course, it only seems fitting to celebrate Julia's centennial with a sliver of cake from her recipe archives.
While the grand dame of French cookery mostly stuck to classic French sponge cakes in her iconic tomes, it was still a challenge to narrow down the variety of options. I was tempted left and right by promises of cakes perfumed with orange zest, studded with glacéed fruit, and topped with glossy apricot glaze, but ultimately, only one cake was deemed fitting for the task. Named for the Queen of Sheba, the reine de Saba is quite literally a cake fit for a queen, and while we may have expressed occasional (the slightest of slight!) misgivings about some of Julia's fussier recipes (and this one surely qualifies), there's no denying that Julia was, and is, a queen in our hearts, and ought to be celebrated as such.
Francophile alert: if Julia Child, the grand dame of French cookery, were still alive, then she would be celebrating her centennial birthday in just one short week (on Aug. 15). Naturally, it only seems fitting to crack the spine on her seminal masterpiece, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and get cooking, in honor of the auspicious date.
Not too surprisingly, flipping through the pages of pithy prose and detailed instructions provided ample inspiration — one could easily spend a year devoted to cooking from the hefty tome — but my penchant for anything and everything soup eventually led me to settle on her classic recipe for potage parmentier (otherwise known as potato leek soup).
Confession time part deux: up until relatively recently I was deathly afraid of anything and everything shellfish. My irrational reasoning led to years of missed opportunities to dine on the sweet and briny flesh of everything from lobster to, you guessed it, mussels. That said, since I changed my tune (buttery herb-flecked roast crab was my entreé into the shellfish-lovers club), I've been making up for lost time.
I'm a sucker for all things bivalve and crustacean but had yet to try my hand at shellfish cookery at home. It seemed only fitting to follow Julia Child's guidelines for moules à la marinière on my first at-home shellfish adventure; her gentle but firm recipe guidance didn't fail to deliver.
Never experimented with fleur de sel, herbes de Provence, or even French lentils? That's OK, because we're going to share our favorite products to bring that much-needed je nais se quoi to your table. For those not too familiar with French cuisine, it relies heavily on ingredients like butter, fresh fines herbes (translation: fine herbs), and citrus like lemon, but despite the use of predominantly perishable items, there are a number pantry staples each Francophile should keep in the kitchen. Store the best of France in your cupboard with these 10 essentials.