Eggnog – Alcohol & raw eggs make the season bright [Repost]

Originally posted on 21 December 2012, the Traditional Egg Nog recipe has passed independent replication by Josh Witten.

My father is a very clever man. Long ago, as a Christmas Eve was coming to a close and we were preparing to plate up our milk and cookie offering to Santa, my dad stopped us with a suggestion. Arguing that, because our name was near the end of the alphabet, we were going to be one of the last houses Santa visited. Therefore, the jolly old elf would be very cold and tired of milk. Instead, we should leave him some bourbon to warm him up. It didn’t take long for our young minds to realize that a warmed up and happy Santa was much more likely to leave us better loot. As it happened, Dad had some of Santa’s favorite bourbon (parents know these things), which by amazing coincidence was also my dad’s favorite. I would hazard to say that this was the creation of our family’s traditional Christmas drink: alcohol.

In the spirit (or spirits) of my family’s holiday tradition, this post is going to celebrate my personal favorite Christmasy holiday drink: eggnog. Continue reading “Eggnog – Alcohol & raw eggs make the season bright [Repost]”

Independent replication

 

I know what you are thinking. Ben makes the recipes he writes about sound easy. It seems like understanding the science behind what I’m cooking will help. But I can’t really make that. Can I? Continue reading “Independent replication”

Mushroom Soup & Homemade Stock: The Root of All Flavor

This week’s recipe is a bit of a two-for-one. The “main” recipe is a fall favorite of mine, mushroom soup (PDF – 770kb). This recipe only has five ingredients (not including salt and oil, which are staples, not ingredients), the most important of which is not, in fact, the mushrooms. It’s the stock (PDF – 115kb). Just replace the mushroom with any number of vegetables and we can still make a delicious soup – as long as we start with good stock. So, if we want to understand the science behind great mushroom soup, we need to understand the science behind good stock. Continue reading “Mushroom Soup & Homemade Stock: The Root of All Flavor”

Creme Brulee: The Science of Sexy

Yesterday, I promised you sexy food and the science behind it. Therefore, crème brûlée. Look at all those accent marks! Sexy, right? And, why not start with eggs – queen of ingredients, bringers of life, denizens of diner griddles, the heart of fluffy meringues, and the soul of silky custards. Crème brûlée is sexy because it is simple. Smooth, creamy custard1 contrasts with a thin, crisp layer of smoky caramel. Every flavor and texture is a balance – creamy and crisp, sweet and bitter, light and deep – harmonizing to enhance and elevate the dish.

If you want to know the steps to making crème brûlée, use the recipe below (PDF – 115kb). If you want to know how crème brûlée becomes sexy keep reading. The science of sexy can be unlocked by through an understanding of a few properties of these few, simple ingredients. Continue reading “Creme Brulee: The Science of Sexy”

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