Friday, October 22, 2010

Back into the Test Kitchen with Mark Bittman

For my super loyal readers out there, you're probably wondering what happened to the last Test Kitchen feature where I was supposed to cook a recipe from Food and Wine magazine. Well, the winning recipe, a Greek fish dish, required me finding a whole fish. And can you believe it's not easy finding a whole fish at the neighborhood store?

I wasn't motivated to make that recipe. And then I let my subscription to Food and Wine expire because, if you look back at some of my previous Test Kitchens, I haven't been that excited about the results of the recipes in the magazine. Also, it might seem I haven't been cooking because my kitchen is/was in a state of upheaval.

I had been talking about renovating my tiny kitchen this year, which is why I haven't gone on a foreign trip. I spent the last month getting quotes and price-shopping supplies. When I lined up the most affordable contractor, he totally flaked out on me. Now I have to start from scratch.

It may be awhile before I get my kitchen renovated, so I thought I needed to get back into the Test Kitchen, even if it's in my rundown kitchen. Instead of recipes from magazines, each month I'm going to cook a recipe from one of the many cookbooks on my shelf.

I'm happy to kick off my new and improved Test Kitchen with the latest cookbook from New York Times food writer Mark Bittman. "The Food Matters Cookbook" (Simon & Schuster, September 2010, $35) is a thick book filled with more than 500 recipes that are good for your health and the environment. What this means is a lot of vegetarian recipes. But this isn't a vegetarian cookbook, there are a few meat and fish dishes. But everything is classic Bittman, simple recipe that's easy to make.

So be sure to vote in the poll on the upper right corner with which recipe from Bittman's cookbook I should test. Then return next month to see how it all turned out.

Photo courtesy of Readers Digest.


agent713 said...

Yes! I have totally been waiting for the return of the test kitchen!!! ...actually that's a total lie. I didn't even notice :P even if I do consider myself a "loyal reader" ;) I am looking forward to a recipe from the Food Matters Cook Book though. I've looked through it but not purchased it yet.

Hungry Dog said...

I'm excited to follow this feature of yours. I like Mark Bittman a lot. ANd I too have had mixed results with Food and Wine recipes--I don't blame you for letting your sub lapse.

Jenster said...

You are very brave to be dealing with contractors and letting people tear up your kitchen, but I know that the end result will be very worth it!

I'm excited to follow your experiences with any of the four recipes, although I did give a vote to the noodles.

mark said...

I voted! Good idea using the survey, I like it.

JulieK said...

I am so glad the test kitchen is coming back. I love Mark Bittman, and eat his savory oatmeal every morning..

Mrs. L said...

As someone who is trying to work her way cooking one dish from each of her cookbooks, I salute you and welcome to my world! Trying to figure out which "one" recipe to cook is always the hardest part. Your idea to pick a few recipes and let us vote is perfect!

Just got the Food Matters Cookbook last week. Looking forward to seeing what recipe you make out of it!