a thoughtful web.
Good ideas and conversation. No ads, no tracking.   Login or Take a Tour!
comment by ButterflyEffect
ButterflyEffect  ·  5 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Tips for Better Burgers

Sometimes I wonder a couple of things like, does J-Kenji Lopez Alt write this from an absurdist or satirical undertone? Or does he actually, truthfully, believe everything he writes?

The second is, who is the audience that reads this and goes YES, this is what I must be doing with my burgers?





kleinbl00  ·  4 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Putting dozens of intense pretenders on cable and watching them freak out about cooking has had the effect of making everyday Americans freak out about cooking. It's the same problem we've always had with wine - there's so many varieties that people vapor lock and end up buying the shit with Snoop Dogg on the bottle. Everyone who wants to cook but can't is so fucking flummoxed by 30 years of Food Network that they think it's hard and they're all terrified of making mistakes. So "top ten mistakes you are making when you're just mashing fucking ground beef into a ball and grilling it" gets pageviews.

It's fucking sad. Food and cookware people are pretty much at "you're going to have to work hard to fuck this up" but food culture is at "you're going to fuck this up unless you work hard." A baker that knows what she's doing will go "today is a bad day for pie crust." A baker that doesn't know what she's doing will read Serious Eats, follow everything semi-studiously and then beat herself up because apparently humidity is a myth. After all, if you refrigerate refrigerate refrigerate, Kenji insists your shitty pie crust is your fault.

It's written this way because when we don't feel competent, we love do's and don'ts and because if you feel competent, you stop reading this shit. Cookbooks didn't used to have amounts or temperatures in them. Now? Now we have Alton Fucking Brown telling you that you goddamn better weigh your water if you want an accurate measurement.