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Knife Sharpening

by Elizabeth Skipper December 17th, 2014 | Ask the Chef
Ask The Chef I was thinking about buying this handheld knife sharpener. You put the blade of the knife in the device and simply pull it through to sharpen it.  Is a device like this useful, or should I just stick with having my knives professionally sharpened?

You ask as if getting your knives professionally maintained is all that’s required to keep them sharp. Unless you’re getting this done often (commercial kitchens have it done weekly or bi-weekly), even in a home kitchen, your knives are getting awfully dull between sharpenings. So you need to be doing something at home.

Here are two questions
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Roasted Tomato Soup

by BnB Finder December 16th, 2014 | Best BnB Bites, Recipes Best BnB Bites
During the holidays we have our traditional holiday dinners, and then want something different. This roasted tomato soup recipe from The Inn at English Meadows, which is located in Kennebunk, Maine, is the perfect soup for winter to warm you up, but it uses a variety of fresh tomatoes and basil that will give you the fresh taste of summer. The tomatoes, along with garlic and onions are
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Slightly Sweet Butternut Squash Soup

by TT December 15th, 2014 | Recipes, Soups & Stews
In case you aren't a regular Think Tasty reader, you may not realize that I have a seasonal fixation with butternut squash.  Actually, it's a two season fixation, and if it's a cold spring, it can seep into a third.  I love eating butternut squash in cooler weather. It is hearty, has great flavor, and is so versatile. After cooking the squash, I have many lunches just waiting to be made. (If I don't share it with my family). Seeing that I can eat squash weekly, I don't have to share all that often. For reasons I
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Cooking Basics

Stew 101

by Jane Wangersky December 12th, 2014 | Cooking Basics
It’s easy to see why pretty much every culture that arose in a place with any kind of winter has come up with some form of stew: It’s warming like soup, but more solid, with enough heft to serve as the day’s main meal. And -- like ground meat -- it turns some of the tougher parts of an animal into something tender and tasty. Believe it or not, it’s also pretty easy to make. The time it takes is way more of a consideration than the work involved.

At the store you’ll see stewing cubes, chunks of beef about
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Southwestern Pork Stew

by Jane Wangersky December 11th, 2014 | Recipes, Simple Solutions, Soups & Stews
Recipes This is a stew recipe for people who don’t like making stew. With a limit of four ingredients, I needed to make the process simpler too, and you can’t get much simpler than this.  No flouring the meat, no measuring spices, no need for stock or broth, no thickening the gravy, you don’t even have to peel the potatoes. The liquid, vegetables, and seasoning all come out of one can -- of flavored diced tomatoes, the beginning cook’s friend -- and still this is very much a homemade dish.

I found the pork shoulder for sale already cubed, labeled “sweet
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