Risotto alla Milanese

8th Nov 2007


Back when I was writing about corn risotto and the magical risotto pancake , I was kicking around the Internet trying to discover exactly how to make one correctly.  Recipe after recipe called for a very specific risotto preparation, one I'd never even heard of, something called Risotto alla Milanese, or Milan-style Risotto.  It's flavored with chicken or beef stock, a simplified base of...

The Plate

9th Oct 2007


Due to some really bad planning on my part, I didn't have the lead picture of yesterday's localvore post.  But I have it now.  Here are all our rules laid out officially on a paper plate.  The plate was xeroxed and sent to me.

Yes, we did call ourselves local-yocals.  Yes, we did repeat the spices commandment.  Yes, the last rule does dictate that Nikki must bring a local date to each gat...

Localvore Week 1: I Tried. I Failed. I Bought Butter.

7th Oct 2007

localvore 1

It came to us late in the evening some time in early September.  A few bottles of wine down and numerous beers under our belt, we decided that we would try to eat all locally for a month.  While not exactly a novel concept, it felt noble.  We’d help Ohio farmers and eat well in the process.  We toasted to the prospect and ceremoniously wrote the rules out on a paper plate.

Those rules and r...

I Invented a Risotto Recipe and Figured Out What to Do With the Leftovers

3rd Oct 2007


The other day I was watching Iron Chef and Lidia Bastianich was a judge on the show.  I'd never seen her in this role, and, frankly, it was scary.  The woman is a strange blend of passion and unsmiling seriousness.  Generally people who love food are laid back and groovy, and enthusiasm is usually tempered with a good dollop of sheepish self-consciousness: "I know I'm obsessed, and it m...

How to Make Pad Thai

13th Aug 2007


Part of the reason I bought a wok in the first place was because I read the excellent, thorough, and inspiring post at Chez Pim called "Pad Thai for Beginners." It made a mysterious dish of the takeout world suddenly, approachably attainable.  Every step was lovingly explained, each ingredient inspected.  Pad Thai could be mine.

With a wok bought, seasoned, and oiled , I set off...

When Cheaper is Better: How to Season a Wok

10th Aug 2007


Usually, when you're buying cookware, the rule is this: spend more for better quality.  Sure, those big boxed sets of cheap, thin pots and pans at IKEA or Target are tempting, in that pre-packaged, one-stop-shop sort of way: but how good can you really do with pots and pans that average out to $5 a piece?  Your sauces will burn, your food will stick, you'll be unable to simmer anything becau...

The Paupered Chef in Print

11th Jul 2007



Our first-ever print article is published in The Washington Post today !  It's about what to do with all those leftover herbs in the fridge. If you can get your hands on a print copy, it looks quite good on the page, too. Enjoy!

O Hi O: What I''ve Done On My Summer Vacation

9th Jul 2007

wonder bread 2

It's been a while.  I know.  I'm sorry.  But I haven't been lounging around, skipping work, or shunning the internet.  Hell, I haven't even really been on vacation.

What I have been doing a lot of recently is driving.  It took well over 500 miles to get an aging car to the Midwest.  The car promptly threw a fit when we parked it in the driveway, overheating then leaking, until we had to g...

What You Should Do This Sunday

5th Jul 2007

It's been an impromptu vacation here at the Paupered Chef.  Does it count as a vacation if you don't necessarily plan on it?  We'll be back to our blogging by Monday with some exciting announcements, so you'll have to wait until then.

But in the meantime, if you live in New York, there is a promised-to-be-legendary last-minute event being put together by Tom over at Grocery Guy , in Sou...

Vermouth Is More Than an Alternative to Wine

13th Jun 2007


Curious about what vermouth is made with, and how it can be useful in cooking?  So were we. Head over to Serious Eats and we'll tell you about it .