Japanese-Style Grilling at Home
Japan’s modern grilling traditions can be traced back to the irori: a sunken hearth in the floor around which families gathered to grill meat and vegetables. Yakiniku’s shichirin brings the same spirit of communal cooking to your own backyard. This tabletop ceramic grill set comes with everything you need for your own yakitori-inspired cooking, including your choice of charcoal: quick-lighting briquettes or long-lasting binchotan (a type of charcoal made from kiln-fired oak, which is nearly smokeless and burns extremely hot). Enjoy Japanese-style barbecue, or get your group grilling burgers and roasting marshmallows together. Available for $549 at 177milkstreet.com/ma22-grill.
A Knife as Beautiful as It Is Practical
The most useful tool in your home also can be the most beautiful. For a multipurpose folding knife that’s as elegant as it is functional, we turn to the artisans at Goyon-Chazeau, famed French knifemakers who have been honing their craft for generations. Their handmade Thiers juniper wood folding knife takes its name from a region of France synonymous with knifemaking. Its design evolved from the classic, all-purpose knife carried by farmers. And sure enough, the Thiers can tackle household tasks of all kinds, whether slicing meat, cheese and fruit, or trimming twine and cutting fresh herbs from the garden. A stiff slipjoint spring keeps it securely fastened, while its ultra-tough Swedish 12C27 steel blade not only sharpens easily but holds an edge longer than other knives. Available for $199 at 177milkstreet.com/ma22-knife.
Drizzle Your Za’atar
At Milk Street, we sprinkle the aromatic Middle Eastern spice blend za’atar on everything from flatbreads to hummus—there’s no better way to wake up a dish than this bold combination of wild thyme, sumac and toasted sesame. So we were delighted to discover Terranean Herbs & Spices’ Za’atar Condiment, which pairs za’atar with silky extra-virgin olive oil from Lebanon to create a condiment perfect for drizzling and dipping. It lends itself nicely as an earthy, tangy dip for freshly baked pita, a sauce for fish or a poultry rub. And for a little heat, opt for the spicy version, which is spiked with cayenne pepper. Available for $14.95 at 177milkstreet.com/ma22-oil.
The Only Measuring Cup You Need
We finally found a measuring cup that does it all. The experts at Tala, who have produced baking and decorating equipment in England since 1899, came up with a solution that whittles down the need for dry measuring cups, liquid measuring cups and a scale, combining all three into one handy gadget. The jack-of-all-trades Dry Cook’s Measure offers many different volume measurements; it even provides weight-to-volume conversions for common pantry ingredients, from rice and sugar to lentils and shredded suet. (Bonus: It cuts down on dirty dishes, too.) And this old-school tool suits modern kitchens in more ways than one—its vintage 1950s-era design looks great on any shelf. Available for $22.95 at 177milkstreet.com/ma22-cup.
Bold, Versatile Mexican Linens
The history of Mexico’s vibrant textiles dates back centuries. During the pre-Hispanic period, fibers from yucca, palm and maguey plants were used to create beautiful fabrics. Verve Culture takes inspiration from that legacy with a four-piece set that will add a splash of color to any table. Handmade by Mexican artisans, these charming servilletas (literally “napkins”) weave together traditional and modern design. And thanks to their 24-by-18-inch size, they can play many roles in the kitchen: Wrap tortillas to keep them warm, or use as place mats, tea towels or, yes, napkins to brighten your home. Then throw them straight into the laundry for easy cleanup: They’re machine-washable. Available for $22 at 177milkstreet.com/ma22-cloth.
Ginger Grating Woes, Solved
Grated ginger adds instant punch to many of our favorite dishes, but it can be a hassle to prep. For anyone who’s sick of scraping stringy pulp out of their wand-style grater, Japan’s Aux Co. Ltd offers a unique solution: the Oroshi Spoon. This ingenious tool grates and zests easily, thanks to sharp blades set at a 60-degree angle. The bowl of the spoon collects the gratings, so you can easily scoop them out or—better still—stir them directly into your recipe. We also use it to zest citrus or shred garlic for easy mixing into vinaigrettes and marinades. Or try it with whole spices such as nutmeg and cinnamon: Simply grate, then swirl the shavings into mulled wine, hot chocolate or cider. Available for $24.95 at 177milkstreet.com/ma22-spoon.
Fresh Flavors From the Freezer
Fresh peas are amazing, but their season is short. So we always keep a bag of frozen peas on hand for adding to soups, stews and risottos. And we know that’s just the start. We asked the members of the Milk Street Facebook Community to share their favorite ideas.
Dianna Guarini Beach, of Jamison, Pennsylvania, combines thawed frozen peas with orzo and cremini mushrooms, plus aromatics and a shot of vermouth. Cooking the orzo as if making risotto—that is, by adding liquid in separate additions and stirring vigorously—yields a velvety, creamy consistency.
Betsey Walker Culliton, of Austin, Texas, makes a simple no-cook salad featuring frozen peas, fresh mint and feta. She aptly describes it as “springtime in a bowl.” The saltiness of the feta is a perfect complement to the sweetness of the peas and freshness of the mint, and its creaminess pulls together all the elements.
And Dorothy Higgins, of West Hartford, Connecticut, makes a deliciously rich and savory pasta dish with pancetta, peas and Gorgonzola. It’s a household favorite that she whips up on a weekly basis, sometimes with some arugula tossed in at the end. She suggests gemelli pasta; we found that any medium curly shape, such as campanelle or cavatappi, works well.
For Milk Street’s versions of all three recipes, go to 177milkstreet.com/communityrecipes.