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What’s the Difference Between White and Yellow Cake?

What’s the Difference Between White and Yellow Cake?

Remember when vanilla was so … vanilla?  No longer. Once the outdoor warmth hits, many of us crave something lighter than the dense, fudgy, nutty chocolate depths we turn to in winter. Vanilla is nuanced. It's versatile. And it takes two main forms when it comes to cake: white and yellow. So what really is the difference between the two? READ MORE

What’s the Difference Between Fajitas and Tacos?

What’s the Difference Between Fajitas and Tacos?

Lumping together fajitas and tacos is like saying apples and apple pie are basically the same thing. Yes, they both involve fruit. But one is the party favor, and the other is the whole fiesta. The confusion lies with the fact that fajitas and tacos both have meat inside tortillas with toppings such as salsa, pico de gallo, guacamole, cheese, and sour cream. READ MORE

Should You Rinse Meat Before Cooking?

Should You Rinse Meat Before Cooking?

It can be so tempting when you yank your glistening, bloody T-bone from its sealed plastic package with a snap, or unwrap that crimson lamb chop from the butcher paper like it's a gift. The urge overtakes many of you, especially when you wrest a shiny bird from its shrink-wrap. That chicken is so slick, he's just crying for it, you claim. READ MORE

What’s the Difference Between Chicken Stock and Chicken Broth?

What’s the Difference Between Chicken Stock and Chicken Broth?

We must confess: After an informal survey at the office and beyond, we discovered some of us (we're not naming names) — who love to cook — weren't 100-percent clear on the difference between chicken stock and broth. We knew one version was somewhat heartier, but which one and how, was befuddling (to some of us). A Google image search for broth continues to provide stock images. Chicken stock, that is. Professional chefs and experienced cooks like us spout the broth and stock terms interchangeably. For instance, we use both words in our Roasted Chicken Broth with Scallops and Chives recipe. READ MORE

Are Brown and White Sugar Interchangeable When Baking?

Are Brown and White Sugar Interchangeable When Baking?

Sort of, is the quick answer. There is a difference between what brown sugar and white sugar do to your pastries and breads, but in a pinch, just use either sugar. Brown and white sugars are somewhat interchangeable, but they will make your bread or pastry slightly different depending which one you choose. READ MORE

What’s the Difference Between Naan and Pita?

What’s the Difference Between Naan and Pita?

Naan and pita look so similar. But … not quite. Look closer. One is fluffy, bubbly, and often oval-shaped. The other is circular and has these wonderfully convenient pockets, perfect for sandwiches. Those are the two most noticeable differences between naan and pita — both round, slightly leavened wheat flatbreads. You can brush them with oil or butter and sprinkle spice blends or herbs on them, if you so desire. They both make handy substitutes for pizza crust too. READ MORE

The Ultimate Guide to Spring Cleaning Your Pantry

The Ultimate Guide to Spring Cleaning Your Pantry

KITCHEN PANTRY 101 Spring cleaning was always more of a psychological endeavor when we were growing up, a chance to clear minds and face new starts as our moms made us go purge our closets and our art-class wall hangings. As we get older, we realize spring cleaning has benefits beyond mere tidiness, especially in the kitchen. The annual pure of drawers, cupboards, and pantry is the one time of the year we assess the quality of our provisions: spices that have gone stale, half-opened boxes of cavatelli we shouldn’t let molder on the shelf, that three-year-old can of pork rillettes you picked up in Paris and know, realistically, you’ll never open. Consider this primer on freshening up your pantry a twofer. First, we’ll explain what to stock your shelves with if you’re starting from scratch, all the baseline essentials you’ll need to be a good and versatile cook. Second, we’ll suggest the things you should take a good look at in the first few weeks of spring to hit the reset button for the warm-weather season ahead. READ MORE

The Ultimate Guide to Eating a Healthy Breakfast Every Day

The Ultimate Guide to Eating a Healthy Breakfast Every Day

Breakfast can seem like the stickiest trap of the day: muffins, croissants, donuts, enormous bagels—they’re tantalizingly easy to grab when you’re fast-walking through a commuter train station or punting from the parking garage to the office lobby. You know you need to eat breakfast (that phrase, “most important meal of the day,” rings in just about every American’s ears) but how to do it without selling your nutritional soul to the carb side? Healthy options every bit as convenient as the apple fritter have sprung up in the past few years, but who can afford to lay out for a $10 juice, in addition to that $5 almond-milk latte? Making sure you have a healthy breakfast everyday is a matter of staying resolute—and knowing the best shortcuts and quick-to-make recipes that’ll both fuel the early part of your day and not make you late for the 9 a.m. status meeting. READ MORE

The Ultimate Guide to Cooking for Two

The Ultimate Guide to Cooking for Two

Cooking for two can be an endless struggle to break up packs of chicken parts into freezable units, dealing with leftovers (resurrecting, freezing, or throwing away), and just plain wondering what to do with an open can of tomato paste you needed one teaspoon from that scaled-down chicken cacciatore recipe. Things are changing, thankfully—there’s now a market (regrettably still niche) for lower-yield recipes and cooking-for-two books and blogs. But for modern living’s vast demographic of two-person households, new resources aren’t appearing fast enough. READ MORE

The Ultimate Guide to Picnicking

The Ultimate Guide to Picnicking

The picnic is one of the annual joys of warm-weather (and sometimes cool-weather) eating. On West Coast beaches, where the Pacific crashes into rocks along the horizon; in Midwest forests, and among the dunes of Lake Michigan; and in manicured urban parks in the Northeast, we love nothing better than to lift the lid of a cooler, flip open an old-fashioned hamper, and pop the lids of Tupperware to lay out a feast. Planning a picnic is more than just dragging outdoors the food you’d already be cooking. Throwing a great picnic is the result of a few factors: the setting, the weather (obviously), and the ease of serving and assembly (grilling marinated chicken skewers or portobello mushroom caps on coals is one thing; assembling and cooking panini on site, in a cast iron skillet precariously perched on cinderblocks over a fire, is another). READ MORE