The holidays are a busy time of year but especially so here at Milk Street. Our editorial director just returned from a trip to Naples and I traveled to Oaxaca to eat mole, tacos, and much more. I also finished up our fall book tour (order our latest book, Milk Street Tuesday Nights, if you didn't get one for the holidays) with stops in Chicago (the local TV station, WGN, was home to Bozo the clown!) and then Louisville where we had a sold-out night thanks to Carmichael's bookstore. At WGN, I also met four jump-roping reindeer!
The new issue of Milk Street just arrived with a cover story on Sicily’s simple pastas plus weeknight miso-glazed salmon and a cheat sheet for roasting any vegetable. The second season of our TV show is in full swing, as is our weekly Milk Street podcast, and our store made life just a little easier for gift-givers everywhere.
With the new year in sight, we also took a moment to collect our most popular new recipes from 2018—the ones you loved most—while we poured ourselves a coquito, a coconut milk-based Puerto Rican cocktail people liken to eggnog. See below for a collection of recent highlights and cooking tips we love.
Our Top Recipes of 2018
Take a look at our 25 most popular recipes from 2018 so that you can see what everyone else was cooking, and bookmark the ones you haven’t tried yet. From a Tunisian chickpea stew—the best soup in the world, anyone?—to the simplest but craveable pasta (and we’re not even talking about cacio e pepe, although that made the list, too), this year’s most popular new recipes are comforting and approachable enough for a weeknight, but also bring something new to the table.
New Cooking School Classes Announced!
From Hot Skillet Suppers from Around the World to Holiday Baking, this month’s classes at Milk Street Cooking School covered a range of subjects. The former covered dishes like Pork Chops in Chipotle Sauce and Chicken Donburi Rice Bowls, while the latter offered treats like Poppy Seed Bread and Oaxacan Hot Chocolate. We also recently launched our online cooking school with a course on using spices in your home kitchen.
Kitchen Tip: Slashed Chicken
For juicier, more tender chicken, cookbook author Andrea Nguyen slashes her bird to the bone. A series of slashes creates significantly more surface area for the marinade to coat, resulting in meat that is boldly seasoned to the bone in as little as 20 minutes.
The Sunday Cook
When you’re searching for quick but flavorful meals to cook all week, look no further than our series The Sunday Cook, where Milk Street food editor Matt Card lays out a few recipes to cook on Sunday, and ways to make the dishes last through the week. This month, he curated a plan featuring Miso Gochujang Pulled Pork, Arroz Verde and Thai-inspired slaw, for weeknight meals that include burritos, pork fried rice and Carnitas Quesadillas.
Milk Street TV: Middle Eastern Favorites
Watch our show and you’ll travel all over the world, from the Middle East, where we find inspiration for recipes like Bulgur-Tomato Salad with Herbs and Pomegranate Molasses (Eetch) to France, where we learned Chicken en Cocotte. Look out for Season 3 next year, and buy the book, which features every recipe from Seasons 1 and 2, if you haven’t already.
Milk Street Radio: Simply Yotam
Among other guests like Julia Turshen and John Carter Cash, this month Yotam Ottolenghi appeared on Milk Street Radio, where he shared the one ingredient he always keeps in his fridge, his tip for roasting better vegetables, and what it’s like to cook for his kids.
More from Milk Street:
Milk Street on the Road:
In Oaxaca, breakfast might be nopal (cactus) with beans, cheese, egg, and pico de gallo; rich and smoky Chilaquiles de Guajillo; or memelas, made with tortillas topped with beans, cheese, chorizo, or eggs and liver, with some lard on every tortilla. Look out for recipes inspired by my trip in the new year.
Kitchen Tip: The Quickest Way to Improve Your Baking
If you want to improve your baking, the quickest way is to weigh your ingredients, especially flours, instead of using volume measurements. Here at Milk Street, we have done a national survey of the weight of a cup of flour and found that a dozen different places have a dozen different answers. How you scoop or add the flour to the measuring cup can have a huge difference in how much that cups weighs. To solve this problem, we averaged all of the national results, did our own measurements, and came up with a table of weights for a dozen different types of flour – one cup of AP for example weighs 130 grams. Take a look. Print out. Bookmark. Or commit to memory.
Kitchen Tip: One Simple Step for Better Cocktails
Any home cook worth his or her salt knows that salt brings out flavor—it’s an essential ingredient. So why don’t we use salt in our cocktails? If you’re gearing up to tend bar at home for New Year’s Eve, mix 4 grams (a generous ½ tablespoon) Diamond Crystal kosher salt and 96 grams (6 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon) water until the salt dissolves. Use ½ teaspoon in most cocktails (a martini needs just ¼ teaspoon) and taste the difference.