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Becky Krystal

Sourdough tips and resources from a former skeptic

When the sourdough craze arrived in the spring at the start of our pandemic life at home, said sourdough was not for me, for now. At a time of unprecedented challenge – personally, professio...

Sugar adds more than sweetness to baked goods. Here’s what to know before you cut it.

In basically every baking recipe that uses it, sugar is doing so much more than providing sweetness. It’s an important component of the carefully designed chemical reactions taking place in ...

How to build better tacos at home, from the tortillas to the toppings

I have read a lot of fine literature in my day, full of beautiful turns of phrases and imagery. One of my favorites, though, is one you, too, may be familiar with if you’re a parent: “Pantlo...

A platter of crisp, Cajun-spiced fried green tomatoes is a fitting coda to summer

Many times I’ve tried to replicate the taste or flavor of a specific dish I’ve had. Sometimes, though, the memory is so distant that it turns out all I’m trying to capture is a feeling – and...

How to choose, prep and use all those summer cucumbers

Each family has its own lore, often-repeated stories and catchphrases. One that I’ll always remember, although told to me secondhand, is from my oldest niece, who while at her great-grandpar...

Ugly produce is the best bargain at farmers markets. Here’s how to buy and use it.

We all grew up hearing that it’s not what’s on the outside but the inside that counts, that you can’t judge a book by its cover and all those other oft-repeated pieces of wisdom. Of course, ...

How to choose between food processors and blenders for your cooking projects

Food processors and blenders tend to get lumped together when people talk about kitchen appliances. After all, you can throw a bunch of ingredients into each and come out with something pure...

Six ways to cut back on salt - and keep the flavor - when cooking at home

Salt is everywhere. It serves an important function in keeping our bodies operating, but with modern convenience food and dining habits, it can be easy to overdo it. Limiting sodium intake i...

Why you should use your toaster oven as more oven, less toaster

Given the name, it’s no surprise that people might put the emphasis on “toast” when thinking about their toaster oven. But these days, as the countertop appliance gets smarter and better, yo...

How to turn single-purpose kitchen tools into multiuse gadgets

I have a pretty small kitchen with a limited amount of room (ask my basement how it feels about being the overflow storage space). So whenever I feel the inclination to add “just one more th...

Ice pops are a quintessential summer treat. Here’s how to make your own.

Few summer treats are as iconic as the ice pop. Hot days, a rainbow of colors dripping down your arm: It’s pure bliss. And it happens to be bliss that you can easily create in your own kitch...

When life gives you herbs by the fistful, put them to use in sauces, salads and drinks

As I write this, I’m sitting on my patio staring at my herbs. The basil, parsley, thyme, rosemary, cilantro and oregano (back from a one-year hiatus!) are polite and restrained, for now. In ...