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what's ok at the Times  

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
magazines are notorious for altering recipes....adding steps, changing ingredients....each has it's own style and things it thinks are OK or NOT.
example is wilting spinach in a microwave, some magazines are anti microwaves.....

But what I enjoyed was getting paid multiple times for the same recipe! Now that was pretty exciting.

Does the NYTimes have working criteria of what's ok?
It seems that they don't shy away from some of the more obscure products.
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
post #2 of 5

What's okay in recipes at the New York Times

I can't think of anything that is forbidden -- in terms of food or cooking techniques -- at the New York Times, as long as it is deemed safe. I can think of only one occasion in which I have taken a stand, and no one objected to my position. I was once given a recipe that called for tearing the limbs off a live lobster. (Since then I have seen this in a number of recipes.) Without even speculating whether lobsters feel pain, this seems like, shall we say, a bad idea. Instead, I gave instructions for killing the lobster instantly with a knife. Then it could be taken apart and cooked.

I once got an irate letter from a reader about a recipe that she mistakenly thought had been in the Times. It had something to do with paraffin that had been heated and had exploded. It was not one of our recipes (and I am not sure what it had to do with cooking, unless it was for sealing jelly jars) and I feel confident that the editors at the Times would avoid any techniques that might be unsafe. Microwave ovens are fine. However, do not try to crack open a coconut using one. My children's favorite recipe-testing story is about the time I was sent a recipe (NOT from the New York Times) for cracking a coconut by wrapping it in a kitchen towel and heating it in a microwave oven. The theory is that the heat will crack the coconut. It will indeed. It cracked the coconut and exploded it into a million pieces that blew open the door of the microwave.
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
gotta love those stories, it keeps our children's interest and improves their story telling abilities! We had some doozeys around our house too.

It was interesting working on 30 minute or less recipes and having the magazine editor/testers alter some steps that saved time and certainly clean-up. Or even more strange changing rice stick noodles to Pad Thai noodles.....rice stick are more readily available. My niece had a pad, pen and clock with a second hand....while I cooked and talked through the recipes she kept notes with the correct time.

The 5 ingredient or less recipes seem to have taken over......ditto 30 minutes or less.....feels like we're trully dumbing down in the kitchen. There is always a need for both but to have them so prevelant or be the "rule" is disheartening.

**Time Life series classical french had lobsters dismantled alive.....I've seen the knife to the back of their head sections.....
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
post #4 of 5

5 ingredients or less...

I agree with you about "5 ingredients or less" being -- unfortunately -- so popular. I do like short easy recipes, and there are plenty that are great. But some recipes are over-simplified and the quality of the food suffers. Recently I read a recipe for pot roast made in a slow-cooker with dry packaged onion soup as the seasoning. I tend to be snobbish about packaged foods, but I do like to be open-minded so I decided to give it a try. Some of my best recipes have come from "ladies" home magazines and newspapers and self-published recipe books, so you never know...Well, that pot roast tasted like onion soup mix, not a good thing. There was a slight "off" taste to it (and I used the most expensive "fancy" brand of soup mix, just so you know)...I don't know if it's from preservatives or chemical favoring, but it was definitely from the soup mix. I liked the rest of the recipe, so I am going to try it again but experiment with paprika (maybe smoked) and some other seasonings. Really, how much more time does it take to open a few spice jars instead of opening a paper package and a foil bag?
post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
A woman after my own heart.....out of all my cookbooks, one of my fav dessert ones is in a manilla envelop...written by Home Economists in the 50's.
It has cookies, cakes, pies, candies....all scratch, most have no pre-made ingredients... different rifts on popular desserts, 5 carrot cake recipes....it's fun reading and trying the variations.

One of my friends is a professor at Washington University, she teaches food literature classes! She's into researching and American food history....looking back throughout history you can see that there's an assumed level of cooking knowledge. The end of the recipe would just be "cook until done".
"Stand in Front of the Stove" about the Raumbaurs (Joy of Cooking) was alittle dry reading but since Irma started out here STL history was pretty facinating. It delves into the evolution of the home kitchen...or deevolution if you will.

Several community cookbooks are delightful.
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
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