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

Make Friends with Your Freezer

When you're overburdened with leftovers or want to hang on to seasonal produce just a little bit longer, turn to your freezer and a few techniques. READ MORE

What the *&@#%!$ Should I Do with All These Radishes?

Slice them thin in salads. Or serve them with a slather of butter and a dunk in fleur de sel as a predinner munch. Or, um … (Crickets.)

That peppery root vegetable, part of the brassicaceae family (its cousins include the cabbage, turnip, mustard, and wasabi plant), is woefully underused in the American kitchen. Radishes' bad reputation seems to have started way back in Pliny's era, when he proclaimed the radish "a vulgar article of the diet" that has a "remarkable power of causing flatulence and eructation." READ MORE

Food Ads Make You Hungry

You can find worse Internet time-wasters than Ads of the World, where print and television ads are posted and then dissected by media insiders (the site's run by Mediabistro).

Criticize at will, or just watch. There are plenty of food ads. See a seductive monkey on a stripper pole and round bed, a string-cheese monster attacking a city, a bummed-out salt shaker, and a "bagel savant." READ MORE

Is It a Sin to Put Truffle Oil on Sushi?

Does truffle oil belong on sushi? Only as a novelty, says la2tokyo. "Over time I have eaten what is probably almost every possible condiment that exists for sushi," says la2tokyo. "If there are any condiments that I haven't tried I have no desire to try them. IMHO, anything other than soy, salt, tare (thickened sweet sauce), and salt+lemon (on rare occasions) is just a novelty, and ultimately loses its appeal once you've had it a few times."

"There is nothing that can compete with the traditional neta (toppings) if they are truly top quality," says la2tokyo. "Novelties can provide some fun as a distraction for a little while, but things like the best Ohma blue fin tuna have a complexity that is unmatched by anything a chef can create, and that is why the best sushi bars in Japan all serve relatively simple sushi."

J.L. thinks there are virtues to both. "I do enjoy Edo-style sushi, but living in a progressive, creative (& hedonistic) city like L.A., I also very much like to try the fusion creations from certain gifted itamae (Ken-san from Kiriko comes to mind)," says J.L. "The bottom line is: If the combination tastes great to you, then enjoy! As with any art, there will always be a camp for the 'purists' and a camp for the 'avant garde.' Food is no different. Without experimentation, there would be no forward progress."

Discuss: Does Truffle Oil Belong on My Sushi?

Wild Mulberries

If you have access to a wild mulberry tree, you're lucky, says goodhealthgourmet. They're delicious and packed with nutrients, but they're very perishable, and fresh mulberries are almost impossible to obtain commercially. You need to use them within a few days of picking—or freeze them, says goodhealthgourmet.

Ripe mulberries are so purple as to be almost black, and they collapse in your fingers if you attempt to pick them. It's a better bet to lay out a tarp or net below your mulberry tree, and then either shake the tree or wait for them to drop naturally.

If you catch some, goodhealthgourmet suggests making muffins, cobbler, pie, or jam. "Macerate with liqueur (or just a little sugar and citrus) and serve over ice cream," says goodhealthgourmet, or "make ice cream or sorbet." The more adventurous might prepare a gastrique (fruit reduction) for meat or fish. Enjoy the summer!

Discuss: It's a volunteer wild mulberry tree in the backyard ...

Wok with Caution

Wok with Caution

This week's mission: A popular suburban staple brings its Chinese American food into the home kitchen. READ MORE

Overheard on the Boston Board

"Sherman Market in Union Square in Somerville almost always has fresh herbs, and they sell them by weight, so you don't have buy more than you can use." – Madrid

"Had the grilled Caesar salad at Washington Square Tavern and LOVED it. The charred bits of the lettuce were delicious." – jcess7

"Even after living here for ten years, the candied nuts they sell at Downtown Crossing still get me. I will bust out 3 bucks for a bag of cashews and skip down the street with them, as giddy as any Faneuil Hall tourist." – ginafly

Is There a French-American Cuisine?

We have Chinese-American cuisine, Mexican-American cuisine, Peruvian-American cuisine. So why don't we hear much about French-American cuisine? "All these versions of immigrant cuisines come about because of substantial concentrations of immigrants who 1) can't get the ingredients they'd have had access to in the home country and 2) (and more importantly) get assimilated to one degree or another and adopt American ingredients and methods as well as adapting their home country cuisine to America," says Masonville. "But the key factor is a substantial ethnic concentration. Since the 18th century, there's simply never been any major French immigrant community in the U.S."

"How about the overstuffed omelet (i.e., Denver omelet) versus the classical French version with just cheese and some herbs?" suggests ipsedixit. "And what about the American version of pepper steak (a.k.a. steak au poivre)?"

"French cuisine's impact on American cooking is sort of an on-again/off-again relationship, and dishes people think of as old-fashioned might have climbed out of a French stew pot in the first place!" says lunchbox. Any time that "we create by marrying aromatic with savory, perfumed with sweet, and take joy in food that is appealing to the eye as it is to the mouth, we're paying tribute to classical French cuisine."

Discuss: French-American cuisine

Dairy Pyrotechnics

Dairy Pyrotechnics

This week's mission: A sleepy old cheese-based comfort classic gets a marketing makeover. READ MORE

Great Grub on the Greenway

The food cart trend continues to spread: The managers of the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway announced this month that food trucks will be opening on the Greenway, with hopes that more people will visit and linger.

Early reports have centered on three spots. The first is Andale Express, an offshoot of Andale Mexican Grill downtown. Like its storefront restaurant, Andale Express offers tacos and burritos plus the choripan, an Argentine chorizo sandwich with chimichurri. "Tasty, but too small," complains spicyivan.

The second is the horribly named Beantown Franks ’n Spuds, purveyors of lovely dogs: "$3 for a jumbo dog ($2 for regular), with a clearly homemade dill relish (my favorite kind, and it's oddly rare around here ... most serve sweet, blech), and onion (they used green onion for this, a very pleasant surprise)," says devilham approvingly.

The final early fave is a Clover Food Truck, a sister to the Clover in Cambridge. Word is that the truck is already turning out quality vegetarian fare. nsenada says that "the chickpea fritters were great—sort of a cross between a crunchy beignet and falafel. Everything is obviously quite fresh and homemade, including the pickles and cabbage (or was the purple stuff radish or turnip? It went down the hatch so quickly I couldn't tell). Rosemary fries were excellent, hot out of the fryer."

Andale Express [The Waterfront]
Rose Kennedy Greenway, Boston
857-225 2521

Beantown Franks ’n Spuds [The Waterfront]
Rose Kennedy Greenway, Boston
No phone available

Clover Food Truck [The Waterfront]
Dewey Square, Boston
No phone available

Discuss: Food carts coming to Greenway