Use Chickpea Liquid to Make the Fluffiest Egg-Free Pancakes Ever

Recipes and techniques generally advance in baby steps. It’s rare that you find a technique so far out of left field that it changes the way people think about food overnight. Sous vide cooking is up there, as is no-knead bread. In the world of vegan cuisine, nothing has shaken things up like aquafaba—the recently coined term for the liquid inside a can of cooked beans. It’s the kind of technique that’s so mind-blowingly simple that I’m amazed nobody discovered it until just a couple of years ago.

Source: Use Aquafaba to Make Extra-Light, Fluffy Egg-Free or Vegan Pancakes

I discovered aquafaba with a recipe for two ingredient meringues a few months ago. It has since nearly completely replaced my use of prepackaged egg substitutes. I am eating a lot more chickpeas now as a result. I’ve also found that canned chickpeas freeze well and defrost quickly.

Make Super Smooth Hummus By Adding a Little Baking Soda

Why is the best hummus always in restaurants, especially Middle Eastern ones?  I think I make a delicious, flavorful hummus that has a great consistency and is better than the ones you find in the supermarket.  But, it doesn’t compare to the silky, light and creamy hummus that I’ve had in restaurants.  I want that kind.  The kind that will drip, not plop, off your pita if you’re not careful.  The kind you can suck up with a straw.  You know what I mean.

Source: Supersmooth, Ligh-as-Air Hummus

Both a blender and a food processor can be used for emulsions, but it’s how they get to that point that makes a difference. I tend to stick to my blender for dressings, soups, sauces and spreads, and – with the exception of mayonnaise – my food processor is used more for chopping and making quick doughs.

A blender you say? Give that a whirl. 😉

Make Perfectly Creamy Tomato Soup by Adding a Little Baking Soda

Yes, all cooking is science; whether you’re making waffles or a steak, you’re enacting small transformations on a series of ingredients in order to create a very new result. But rarely, it seems, are those scientific transformations as immediate as what happens when you add baking soda to your cream of tomato soup.

Source: Put Baking Soda in Your Cream of Tomato Soup! Here’s Why

If you want to use cream for your tomato soup recipe instead of milk, however, you probably won’t need baking soda (or only a pinch of it at least). The fat in the cream helps protect the protein and keeps it from curdling.

Make a Quick Batch of Tasty Caramelized Onions With a Pressure Cooker

There’s a universal law for caramelized onions: The longer they take to caramelize, the tastier they’ll be.

Like all universal laws, this one is meant to be broken.

Source: The Food Lab: Use the Pressure Cooker for Quick Caramelized Onions and French Onion Soup

Caramelized onions are great for enhancing burgers, pasta, salads, and starring in the classic dish, French onion soup. Cooking them to perfection usually takes some time, but a pressure cooker can speed up the process.

Banish Fridge Funk with a Cotton Ball and Vanilla Extract

We’re not too proud to admit that sometimes our kitchens can get a little…funky. From blackberry caramel sauce to soy-glazed chicken thighs to homemade ramen, sometimes even the most intoxicating scents can linger. After a day or two of “Hey, what’s that smell?” we realize that somewhere along the way, last night’s dinner has become today’s awful stench.

And hey: There’s no shame in admitting we’ve got a problem. It’s all in how you handle it. We here at Bon Appétit prefer to take care of business the old-fashioned way. Sure, harsh chemicals might work in cleaning up a mess, but they leave behind a scent that, in our opinion, can be just as bad as that questionable kimchi. So we rounded up our best folk remedies for ridding your kitchen of even the weirdest, worst smells. Here are our favorites…

Source: How to Get Rid of Kitchen Smells with Natural Remedies

Is it embarrassing to admit that 90 percent of the time taking out the trash fixes the problem? 😉

Don’t try the cotton balls/vanilla extract anywhere near your ice maker, or all ice will have a little bit of vanilla extract in it.

Remove Odors from Your Entire Home by Simmering Vinegar

Some of our favorite tips in the kitchen are for getting it sparkling clean; these are their stories.

Source: 7 Kitchen Cleaning Tricks That Really Work

The fruit fly one is interesting.  …Not that I have a need for it… 😉

How/why does this work? What does the vinegar do?

Vinegar is about 90% water, and about 5-10% acetic acid.  Most scented molecules contain a functional group like an amine (putrescine, for example, one of the rotting smells), a thiol (ethanethiol, i.e. skunk smell), or other non-carbon molecules. Acetic acid can bind these to form molecules that your nose can not detect, thus eliminating the odor. Even if it’s not forming an actual chemical bond, it can still coordinate (i.e. form hydrogen bonds, which are pretty strong themselves. It’s analogous to dissolving.) thus removing the scented molecules from the air, woodwork, carpet, etc.

Make Your Own Salt and Vinegar Chips with Homemade Sodium Acetate

Salt and vinegar potato chips are a polarizing topic; you either love them or loathe them. Living with vinegar haters can make life hard, but with the help of just two extremely common ingredients, your family won’t have to battle it out in the chip aisle.

Source: Make Your Own Salt and Vinegar Chips with Homemade Sodium Acetate

Or make even better ones by making a balsamic or malted vinegar reduction (not to syrup, but only 1/2 to 1/3 reduction).  Apply as necessary 🙂

Clean Re-Usable Water Bottles with Baking Soda and Chlorine Bleach

Anyone who regularly uses the same water bottles several times a week – runners, cyclists, hikers, athletes, or any general person-on-the-go that likes to stay hydrated – can attest: they can get nasty. Even if nothing but water and ice ever go in, the crud can still build up, and non-H2O fluids like sports drink or add-ins make the taste, odor, and junk even worse.

 The common-sense solution here is to use a bottle brush. Which will work, if you do it after every use and start with a perfectly clean bottle, and then rinse and dry thoroughly every time. But if the gunk has built up, or your hydration system uses any squeeze tops, bladders, tube, bite valves, etc, there’s more than just the bottle cavity to clean.

Source: How To: A Guaranteed Way to Deep Clean Your Water Bottle

I needed this article – I haven’t made much headway on the gunk that’s accumulated in the water bottle I use for cycling.  I have a different water bottle for chocolate milk, which doesn’t take long to smell bad.

Green Juice Will Not Cure Your Cancer

Cancer misinformation runs rampant on the internet. Headlines on “natural living” websites expose the alleged truth about doctors and scientists in cahoots with Big Pharma. According to the self-styled experts behind these stories, so-called studies claim that everything from baking soda to coconut oil to green juice can cure cancer.

Source: Green Juice Will Not Cure Your Cancer

The thing to keep in mind about cancer is that it is a catch-all term.  There are numerous cancers, and what works for one doesn’t necessarily work for another.  Some, we aren’t predisposed to – the expression of our DNA and cells changes over time due to mutation or environment.  Sometimes both…

Our technology gets better, so we can detect and treat earlier.  This leads to better survival rates.

Vegan Baking: Egg Substitutes

There are many reasons why you might need to replace eggs in a recipe. You could be making a batch of cookies for a vegan friend or a birthday cake for a child with an egg allergy. Perhaps reducing a recipe size has left you needing less than one egg — or maybe you just ran out of eggs altogether. Fortunately, there are several simple substitutes that make it easy to cook without any eggs at all.

To determine the right egg replacer to use, first you have to know why the egg is in the recipe in the first place.

Source: How to Make Your Own Egg Replacers for Vegan Baking

Eggs are perishable, while flaxseed, silken tofu, and chia seeds are all shelf stable. They are great pantry essentials – it’s not just about ideology 😉

…but they forgot about bananas.  Exhibit a: the 3 ingredient oat bar, with tips for ripening bananas faster.