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Recipe inspiration, tips, and kitchen hacks from the Chowhound editors.

The BBC Double Baby Downer

Not that you were likely out there drinking and birthing, but the BBC has published some research results that give you another reason to avoid alcohol while with child:

"In a study of almost 350 young men, sperm levels were a third lower in those whose mothers had drunk more than four drinks a week during pregnancy compared with teetotalers."


Like It, Lick It

Jake Godby, the deadpan owner of Humphry Slocombe ice cream in San Francisco's Mission District, says he doesn't try to be "weird for weird's sake." Nonetheless, he's taking risks with ice cream flavors. Not always with totally positive results. You never know if you're going to get the best ice cream you ever ate (like the Magnolia Thunderpussy beer flavor he did during San Francisco Beer Week), or something too edgy to be truly palatable (like the aggressively spiced pineapple sorbet I ate when we dropped by this time). But the raw, totally experimental feel of the business makes it that much more endearing. READ MORE

Green Fairy in the Biscotti?

Before eating at the market vendors outside of the Ferry Building, we stopped by Blue Bottle, inside, to get caffeinated. But the item that caught my eye wasn't the coffee (though it was good), but biscotti made with olive oil, sesame seeds, and absinthe from local distillery St. George Spirits. Absinthe in a cookie sounded weird for the sake of being weird, but when I tried it, it made total sense, just giving it a traditional anise flavor. The cookie itself was a little too soft and crumbly for me, but the idea behind it was creative and worked.

Happy Birthday, Thursday Farmers’ Market!

Our lunch today at the CUESA Thursday Farmers Market at the SF Ferry Building nicely coincided with the market's one-year anniversary. Balloons were flying, a happy-birthday sign was hanging on the market info booth, and vendors were festive: RoliRoti was giving away tangy charred corn salad, and Tacolicious had a mariachi band to liven things up.


Sam Calagione Moves from Crafting Beer to Crafting TV

Brewer Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head is a legend of the contemporary craft brewing scene, profiled by the New Yorker, partnered with Mario Batali, and famous for his fearless embrace of experimental techniques and flavor profiles. Now, for good or for ill, he'll be hosting a Discovery Channel show called Brewed that starts in autumn of this year.


Coconut Goes Savory

Coconut milk enhances savory dishes from Southeast Asia, India, Brazil, and the Caribbean. It's a key component in some Thai and Indian curries and works very well with fish and seafood.

On the seafood side, Moqueca de peixe is a Brazilian fish stew with coconut milk, fish, shrimp, tomato, onions, and garlic, says ThereseTheFoodie, who calls it "awesome." goodhealthgourmet says Shrimp Madras is "a great, easy recipe."

Thai-style halibut with coconut curry broth is one of BeefeaterRocks's favorite recipes, while shanagain recommends this seafood gumbo with coconut milk.

Coconut rice is popular in Southeast Asia and the Caribbean. boogiebaby makes coconut rice by replacing half the water used for cooking the rice with coconut milk (use a larger proportion of coconut milk if you like it richer, he says). amyzan thinks coconut rice is a great accompaniment to roasted or grilled fish or chicken. Becca Porter loves it as part of red beans and rice. Coconut milk is also used to make Jamaican rice and peas, says cajundave.

Niki in Dayton makes Thai-style creamed corn: Cut corn off the cob and sauté in butter. Add salt and pepper and 1 cup coconut milk per 2 cups of corn; stir in sliced Thai basil at the last minute.

Discuss: Your Favorite thing to make with coconut milk (savory please, no sweets)???

Refuse Dessert Politely

Refuse Dessert Politely

Don't resort to the Windex diet. READ MORE

Roger Ebert’s Rice Cooker Cookbook

Roger Ebert, famed movie critic, wrote an epic blog post in November of 2008, entitled "The Pot and How to Use It." No, it wasn't about putting crappy moves in the right place. It was an ode to the rice cooker. The blog post begat a book, entitled The Pot and How to Use It: The Mystery and Romance of the Rice Cooker, to be released in September. The product description explains how this "charming, practical guide ... contains numerous and surprisingly varied recipes for electric rice cookers." What it fails to mention is that, after thyroid cancer surgery four years ago, Ebert can no longer speak or eat. He uses a feeding tube. READ MORE

Grilled Corn Your Way

Grilled corn on the cob is delicious, any way you make it. There's a variety of methods for whole ears; use whichever suits your personal taste.

Some hounds soak the ears in their husks in water before grilling, removing the silk or not. This forestalls the possibility of the husks catching fire. Davwud removes the loose ends of the husk and cuts the silk down to the top of the ear before soaking. Grilled in the soaked husk, the corn "takes on a very nice grassy taste," he says.

Others grill the corn in the husk without soaking or removing the silk first. "I just put the unopened ears over moderate heat," says alanbarnes, "and while the husks get plenty black, the corn itself is perfect, with small caramelized areas." jfood uses an oven mitt to strip off the husk after cooking. alanbarnes keeps a squirt bottle of water handy in case a husk catches fire.

gordeaux removes the silk before grilling, then slathers the corn with cold butter and ground chile before pulling the husk back over the corn.

Others grill corn after it has been husked. "You have to keep an eye on them and turn frequently," says spb, "but nothing beats a well browned ear of corn. All that sugar is caramelizing, producing tons of complex flavors and the smell of hot buttered popcorn."

Discuss: grilled corn question?

The Big Oreo Shocker

The Big Oreo Shocker

This week's mission: sugar-free sandwich cookies. READ MORE