Wendy Ruopp's Blog (Page 15)

February 14, 2012 - 1:20pm

I’ll admit that I have had my share of mishaps when it comes to cooking rice. Sometimes when the top came off the pot I’d find a mushy, sticky mess. Other times, the grains were burnt and stuck to the bottom. I always use brown or wild rice. Even though these “real” whole grains take a bit longer to cook, they are worth the wait: unrefined grains maintain more heart-healthy vitamins and antioxidants. Plus, they are high in fiber, which is important for a heart-healthy diet.

Don’t Miss: Healthy Brown Rice Recipes

Since brown rice is such an important and healthy staple in my kitchen, I figured it was high time to get smart about rice-cooking techniques. Through trial and some errors, and talking...

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February 18, 2011 - 11:39am

Mad skills I may have (I’m a whiz at spelling, for instance), but getting the timing right for dinner is not one of them. Like an unsuccessful comic whose jokes aren’t clicking, I haven’t mastered the rhythms of the genre—the smooth coordination of getting all the parts of the meal to come together. I start cooking the chicken, and then realize it will be done in 10 minutes, while the brown rice won’t be ready for another 40. Leisurely, one-dish-at-a-time dinner, anyone? As you can imagine, this is not too popular with hungry hecklers. (Or you can have it all done by the time you get home with these Easy, Crock Pot & Slow Cooker Recipes....

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October 18, 2010 - 11:45am

My son is a committed carnivore. So much so that he was plunged into an existential crisis once when asked, “If you had to pick just one kind of meat to eat for the rest of your life, what would it be?” He debated the relative merits of bacon versus chicken versus pork for hours.

Even though that was years ago, imagine our surprise when he took a job last fall as a member of a mostly vegetarian crew doing conservation work in state parks. We didn’t expect him to survive. And yet—he has thrived. Sure, he still stocks up on burgers on the weekend, but during the week he’s found he actually enjoys and is satisfied with veggie-topped pizza and vegetarian chili.

Recipes to try:
Philly Cheese Steaks and...

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October 4, 2010 - 10:56am

Many vegetarians start out the way I did: as 14-year-old girls. Quite a few also end the way I did: with fried chicken. In my case, vegetarianism was a brief fling, weighed down by the earnest food of the post-commune early ’70s. When I tried to share sprouted-wheat-soy-lentil loaves and the like, my friends and family always felt there was something (flavor, meat) missing.

Related: Flavor-Packed Meatless Meals in 30 Minutes or Less

Now, eating vegetarian—whether casually or as a committed life choice—is more mainstream than ever. Today’s meatless meals are fully fleshed-out, flavorful and family-friendly. There’s even a resurgence of the “Meatless Monday” movement that has attracted high-...

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June 29, 2010 - 11:32am

I just don’t seem to have the attention span I once did. (Wait, what was I talking about?) There are so many distractions these days. And this applies to dinner how? Bear with me... (Hunger makes it hard to concentrate.) Attention span... dinner... oh right, got it: These dinners are built on just five ingredients. That’s a retainable list, even for me. (Oil, salt and pepper don’t count as part of the five, but that’s OK because I never forget them anyway.)

When you’re making a meal with just a handful of ingredients, each one needs to pull its weight. Nothing too exotic here—no need to curate a condiment museum—just good-quality, full-flavored foods cleverly combined for maximum enjoyment in a very...

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