How To Make Sun Tea — Cooking Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Jeff Roffman)

Sun tea conjures up the charming memories of my grandmother's tea pitcher on my grandparent's screened-in porch. As kids we drank it over ice on the front steps, swatting away mosquitoes. My mother used to brew an unsweetened version of it on our tiny apartment balconies when I was a teenager. And then iced tea seemed to disappear from my life entirely until I moved to the South and learned how a proper Southerner makes boiled iced tea for surviving sweltering Southern summers.

I've missed the charm of the tea pitcher brewing in the window and wondered, Where has all the sun tea gone? It turns out that many folks have been scared away from brewing sun tea because of the rumored risk of bacteria in the tea. Sun-brewed tea may be a thing of the past, but we can take the principles of sun tea and enjoy a delightfully slow-brewed cup of tea when it gets hot in the summer.


Recipe: Slow-Cooker Ratatouille — The Summer Slow Cooker

(Image credit: Diana Yen)

You might not think "summer" and "stew" belong in the same sentence, but stewing and braising aren't winter-exclusive cooking methods. The colorful spectrum of summer vegetables can be slow-cooked until meltingly tender and sweet — and it's quite easy to do with the help of a slow cooker. Ratatouille, the classic French vegetable stew, is a perfect candidate for this hands-off cooking method.


How To Bake a Whole Eggplant — Cooking Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Maria Midoes)

Baking a whole eggplant is something of a culinary metamorphosis. The hot oven transforms eggplant's firm, spongy interior into a luxurious, velvety texture, which in turn lends its merits to savory dips and vegan bolognese. Yet cooks cannot agree on just how eggplant should be baked. Should we halve it and score it, or poke it and wrap it in foil as you would a Russet potato?

Our testing resulted in a dead-simple solution with stellar results.


How To Make Easy Shredded Chicken in the Slow Cooker — Cooking Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman/The Kitchn)

Behold the single food that has revolutionized my weekly meal plan! From taco night to bulking up salads and grain bowls at lunchtime, the simplicity and versatility of shredded chicken really can't be beat.

Thanks to the slow cooker and a fail-proof ratio, making a large quantity of shredded chicken at once is possible. Here's how you do it.


How To Make Popcorn in the Microwave — Cooking Lessons from The Kitchn

Microwave popcorn has changed my snacking habits forever. No, I'm not talking about the plastic-wrapped packages of microwave popcorn from the store — although I will thank them for the inspiration. I'm talking about a more DIY version using a scoop of kernels and a plain brown paper lunch bag. It's so easy and fast that it has now become the only way I make popcorn.


How To Make Congee Rice Porridge — Cooking Lessons from The Kitchn

Have you ever had congee? This silky, savory rice porridge is an everyday breakfast in China — and indeed, in many parts of the world, where it goes by names like jook, khao tom moo, and arroz caldo. Obviously, if you're not already in the know when it comes to this breakfast, you'd better listen up. You're in for a real treat.


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