The Science of Good Cooking

Does grinding your own meat make a better burger? How does adding fat to your eggs create the perfect tender omelet? Why should you have patience before carving your roast?

Discover the science behind everyday cooking with Christopher Kimball from America's Test Kitchen and Cook's Illustrated. Join us as we explore the fundamental science explaining how — and why — your recipes work.


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I like to cook. I have a few standard, signature dishes where I more or less freestyle every time I make them -- beef stew, chili, quesadillas, pasta sauce. I also like to try new things. For example, I'll probably be making Tyler Hamilton's lamb shank Irish stew this weekend. So yeah, the…
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The closing of Gourmet magazine is a sad event. I won't just miss the lush pictures and Paris travel tips - what I'll really miss is the food journalism, from DFW on the suffering of lobsters to Daniel Zwerdling on the tragic life of an industrial chicken. I hope other magazines can fill the void,…
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I've been following ATC and Cook's Country on and off for years. Between them and Alton Brown I've learned a hell of a lot of technique!

By Truthspew (not verified) on 01 Dec 2012 #permalink

I mince my own cow for burgers because it allows me to control the quality - I definitely get much better burgers! A number of reasons include: (1) the meat is a good quality, slightly aged for a good texture and not too much moisture, (2) the fat is trimmed to be <10% as opposed to the 30-60% frequently rancid fat from the supermarket mince - even the so-called 'lean' and 'heartsmart' bullshit branded mince has far more fat than what I've got in mine.

It's a similar thing for pork sausages - roughly 10% visible fat is about the highest fat content you need in a pork sausage. The 50-80% fat you get in mass-market sausages and salami is just awful - when I was young we wouldn't feed such garbage to the animals, let alone humans. A good salami may have as much as 30% visible fat, but even that's on the fatty side.

Short story: mass-manufactured meat products are there to provide you with large quantities of low-quality high profit margin products because the supermarkets only exist to serve their customers.

By MadScientist (not verified) on 01 Dec 2012 #permalink

Science (and compassion) points to veganism. Don't take my word for it, research it yourselves.

Kimball is good in print (not so much in other media).
Alton Brown is tremendous in any media. His techniques and recipes are accessible to those who can follow directions. Mr. Wizard meets food. Fun for all ages.