Life Style

Smarter Cooking: Pandemic Takeaway, Practical Recipes

Pandemic When it comes to cooking, we’ve completely kicked us out of the comfort zone. Over the past year, we have had to be better shoppers, waste reducers, diet stretchers, and culinary fatigue fighters. People in the food growing, butcher, cooking and serving businesses have tackled the challenge of putting food on the table not only at home but also at work, gaining the wisdom of the kitchen that they have struggled with. We approached a professional panel and asked them to take it home, share cooking coping mechanisms, revised kitchen strategies, and new habits to carry around after the blockade.

Molly Buzz

Author, “Cooking This Book: Techniques and Recipes That Teach You to Repeat” (Los Angeles)

I have adopted some new routines that I will always incorporate. I have never stocked a freezer before. But I have a fully in-stock freezer because I’m trying to minimize going to the grocery store. I just get up in the morning, decide what I’m inspired to make for the day and pull it out. I have 2 chickens, 5 lbs of ground beef, 6 different sausages and 3 cuts of steak, so it contains protein at certain moments.

We also found that keeping tortillas in the pantry was a better option than putting bread in the pantry, as the bread deteriorates quickly. I buy a pack of flour tortillas, but it doesn’t really get worse. By heating with a frying pan or burner, you can immediately revive.

Connor McGin

Ceramic artist Connor McGin Studios (Tarrytown, NY)

I’m making plates for a restaurant, but I’ve noticed that my cabinet is full of mismatched half-chip plates. So one of the first things I did was to take a set of plates home because I had a lot of food and food. If you can’t go to a restaurant, you’d better make it better at home. Even if you take out, it is different to set it on a nice plate.

During the summer, I started looking for places like mushrooms and lamps. The best way to get out.

I spent a tremendous amount of time cooking a meal and enjoying the process and found peaceful enjoyment. I think I’ll go back to that. Not everyone wants to cook a meal that takes time every day, but sometimes it’s just time, so it’s good to focus on it.

Erica Nakamura and Joselin Guest

Butcher Girls (Dobbs Ferry, NY)

Joselin: I have tried various meat cuts in an instant pot. Cook tough cuts in a pressure cooker, cool in a cooking solution and then slice and fry, or bake in a frying pan. We also make mayonnaise, jam and butter. And we started a really aggressive herb garden. All of this has reduced travel to the market.

Erica: I started baking bread, and it became such a love labor. You are stretching the dough at a few o’clock in the morning …

Joselin: We do not recommend that a spouse or someone with a partner start baking bread unless they are having a conversation with their partner. I am now married to this starter.

Erica: Yesterday, Joselin emptied me of the starter collection. Basically, Goo’s bottle is lying down. But she also gave me a Valentine’s Day bread proofreader.

Eytan Zias

Bladesmith, Steelport Knife Co., The Knife House (Portland, Oregon, Phoenix, Arizona)

I turned to meat and fish wholesalers. The restaurant was closed and no one was selling it, so I started buying big fillets of meat and whole fish. I started working on my butcher’s skills. And I already had a Cryovac machine. I bought something, split it, Cryovac it, and my neighbors and my staff had a full freezer of delicious meat and fish.

My kids are sushi fans, so the sushi games at my house are much better. I also got a chicken in the backyard. Half for eggs and half for keeping kids busy.

And we have a lot of deals in our neighborhood. Neighbors are good at baking bread. He didn’t have a good bread knife, so I exchanged him a knife for bread. “I made too much salad dressing, but who do I need? It’s leaning forward!”

Rōze Traore

Private Chef / Instructor (New York City)

I started cooking outside my comfort zone and started doing things I had never done before. I used to just drop in at the store, pick up the ingredients and flap them, but the pandemic made me get into the habit of planning meals. That made me more organized.

I started shopping online, but I’ve never been shopping because I was concerned about the quality. But now it’s more comfortable. It has been successful. I’ve gotten good quality, and frankly, that’s what I enjoyed. It’s convenient and straight to my front door.

I learned a little more about the ingredients and took the time. If you’re not familiar with it, pick up a book to learn more, expand your knowledge, and dig deeper without fear.

Tommy Lee Jones

Farmer, Chef’s Garden (Huron, Ohio)

When the shelves were exposed at the grocery store, I realized what kind of disruption there was in distribution. Local butchers, bakers, farmers and gardeners have become even more essential for supply.

I’m thinking more about food in general now. My brother and I started this program to promote a healthy diet. Not dairy products, meat, lots of legumes, leafy vegetables, vegetables. We’ve always promoted healthy vegetables, but my brother and I are two fat guys. It’s time to practice what we preach. I can’t believe the difference I’m feeling.

I’m also thinking better about how long it will take to eat. This year we worked harder than ever and gave permission to slowly recognize how eating fills us physically and mentally.

Myr Parish

Sommelier, Wine Suite (Denver, Colorado)

I realized that some items were no longer accessible to me, so I had to think about how to make them. It added variety to my cooking and expanded my knowledge.

I cooked Peruvian and Iranian food. I began to explore other cultures deeply because they were what I lacked. I also found Bilia tacos, and I will never eat American tacos again. So now I have all these spice packets and flavor profiles from other countries that I have never had before.

I got hooked on cans — conserva, anything in cans — that’s a big love for me right now. It helped my omega 3. I’m obsessed with it. That’s a problem. But a happy problem.

Steve Sand

Founder of Rancho Gordo Specialty Foods (Napa, CA)

I realized that the salad doesn’t necessarily have to contain lettuce. I really hate cleaning lettuce. It’s a kind of exciting and lettuce is very temporary. I love using mandolins to slice onions, fennel, carrots and celery into thin slices and add extravagant stuff like beans. The cabbage is also finely chopped with a vegetable peeler. Cabbage is great because it lasts a long time.

I’m tired of eating alone. Perhaps the first thing I bought was a plastic tub. I cook extra and hand it out.

If you can have a supper with your friends without going to a movie or sporting event, you can suffer from everything else … that was the hardest part. When this is over, we should all prepare our homes so that we can do nothing but have a non-stop party.

1 bird, 3 recipes: how to get the most out of roast chicken

When chef Rōze Traore embraced his dietary plans, he sought an efficient way to extend his diet to multiple dishes, making a fresh start every time with ingredients. Here, Traore spins lemon butter roast chicken into an open-faced pita of Zaataru spice with marinated yogurt and cabbage. And when the chicken is picked clean, the carcass is ready for inventory.

F. Martin Ramin / Wall Street Journal, Food Styling by Kimuramin


  • 1 (3-4 lbs) whole chicken
  • 3 salted butter
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 lemon
  • ¼ yellow onion
  • 3 twigs rosemary
  • 3 twig times
  • 2 pieces of garlic, half horizontal


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Leave the chicken and butter at room temperature for 1 hour. (If necessary, soften the butter in the microwave for 10 to 15 seconds).
  2. Make spice butter: In a large bowl, mix the butter with salt, pepper, oregano, cumin, cardamom, paprika and honey and stir well. Choose the leaves from one twig thyme, add the leaves to the softened butter and stir for complete incorporation.
  3. Remove offal (if any) from chicken. Using a paper towel, tap the chicken completely to dry. (Because it is completely dry, your skin will be beautiful and crispy during roasting.)
  4. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze it into the chicken cavity. Fill the cavity with half a lemon, onion, garlic, remaining thyme twigs, and rosemary twigs.
  5. Truss chicken: Use a butcher’s leash to tie the legs and secure the wings to the chest.
  6. Tap the chicken again to dry. Spread soft spice butter over the chicken until it is completely covered.
  7. Place the whole chicken in a sheet pan with a wire rack inside. Cover with foil, place in the oven and roast for 15 minutes.
  8. After 15 minutes, remove the chicken from the oven, remove the foil, carefully drain the melted butter in the pan and store in a bakeware. Replace the foil. Return the chicken to the oven and cook for another 20 minutes.
  9. Rotate the chicken and cook for another 20 minutes. Pull the chicken out of the oven again, remove the foil, and use a brush to coat the entire bird with reserved butter.
  10. Raise the heat to 425 degrees. Remove the cover and cook the chicken until the skin turns golden and the instant reading thermometer reads 155-160 degrees, 25-30 minutes. (When the chicken rests, the temperature reaches 165 degrees.)
  11. Let the chicken rest for 15 minutes before serving.

F. Martin Ramin / Wall Street Journal, Food Styling by Kimuramin


  • 1 carcass of chicken
  • 1 medium onion, half
  • 2 carrots, peel and slice into 1 inch
  • Leaves from two celery ribs and one celery bundle sliced ​​into 1 inch pieces
  • Herbs left over from roasting, such as rosemary and thyme
  • 3 pieces of garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Palmesan cheese skin (optional)


  1. Place all ingredients in a 6 quart pan. Cover with water (7-8 cups). Bring to a boil over high heat.
  2. When the pot boils, reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer for 2 hours.
  3. Turn off the fire. Let the inventory cool. Strain. The part to the quote container. Refrigerate and / or freeze.

F. Martin Ramin / Wall Street Journal, Food Styling by Kimuramin


  • 1 cup of Greek whole milk yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon chopped dill
  • 1 lemon and 1 teaspoon of lemon zest juice
  • Garlic ½ cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1 small head purple cabbage
  • 2 tablespoons of champagne or white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Grape seed oil, for polishing pita and grilling chicken
  • 2 pita
  • 1 tablespoon of Za’atar seasoning
  • Roast chicken leftovers
  • Salt to taste


  1. In a bowl, add yogurt, chopped dill, lemon juice and rind, and garlic. Season with salt and season with a whisk until the ingredients are fully incorporated.
  2. Cut the cabbage into quarters. Use a knife or mandolin to slice the cabbage thinly. In a large bowl, toss the sliced ​​cabbage with vinegar, salt and olive oil.
  3. Apply grape seed oil to both sides of the pita bread. Season both sides of the oiled pita with Za’atar.
  4. On the stove, preheat on medium heat for 1 minute on medium heat. Put the pita in a frying pan and cook in about 2 minutes on each side until it is lightly browned. Remove the pan from the heat and set the pita aside.
  5. Pull the remaining chicken out of the bone. Wipe the pot clean.
  6. Heat the cleaned pan over medium heat for 2 minutes. Grape seed oil is dropped into a pan and swirled to coat. Add the pulled chicken and bake for about 5 minutes until golden. Removed from the heat.
  7. To serve, spread a layer of herbal yogurt over each pita and cover with marinated cabbage. Place the chicken meat on top.

Check out new recipes to find and search for all recipes WSJ recipe page.

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Smarter Cooking: Pandemic Takeaway, Practical Recipes

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