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Mouthing Off

By the Editors of Food & Wine Magazine

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Supermarket Sleuth

The Crunchiest Gluten-Free and Multi-Grain Crisps

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F&W Executive Food Editor Tina Ujlaki applies her incredible cooking knowledge to explaining what to do with a variety of interesting ingredients.

I was a work-study student at cooking school in France with Lesley Stowe way back when. I knew that she returned to Vancouver and started a very successful catering business. One day I was nibbling on these fantastic crackers, and found out that Leslie actually made them. Small world!

What makes Raincoast crisps so incredibly delicious is that they're not only as grainy and as light and crunchy as their name implies, but that they’re supertasty as well. I sometimes forget about the cheese or charcuterie altogether, they’re really that good on their own. My favorite flavors are the grainy Original, Cranberry Hazelnut and Rosemary Raisin Pecan, though there are three other varieties as well.

They also have a brand new gluten-free line coming out that we sampled today in the F&W Test Kitchen, and those also have the same satisfying crunch. The crisps are available at specialty food shops coast to coast. They're great with this pimento-goat cheese spread and creamy pistachio dip.

Related: More Fantastic Crackers
Tasty Snack Recipes
Delicious Party Dips

Grace in the Kitchen

The South Meets Spain

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Smoky Shrimp and Grits // © Quentin Bacon

This healthier version of old-school Southern grits uses less cheese, no butter and adds iron-rich spinach. / © Quentin Bacon

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

Shrimp and Grits is one of my favorite all-time dishes. If you're willing to forgo long-cooking grits in favor of quick (not instant) grits, the dish is not only rich, flavorful, creamy and delicious, it's also superfast. I developed this recipe as part of my column on New Southern Classics (Ham Steak with Red Eye Gravy, Biscuits and Sausage Gravy, Etouffee). This is one of those Southern comfort foods that can be ungodly rich, with tons of cream, butter and cheese. I lightened it up considerably by taking out the cream, paring back the butter and cheese (it's still pretty cheesy) and folding in baby spinach to add a nutitious punch. One of my favorite Spanish tapas dishes is gambas al ajillo (shrimp with garlic and oil). I sort of tweaked it a bit by adding smoked paprika, which stands in for smoky bacon, and spooned it over the grits. I'm not a huge calorie counter, though I do watch what I eat. This one never leaves me feeling anything but satisfied and guilt-free. SEE RECIPE »

Related: More Fantastic Shrimp Dishes
Comforting Grits Recipes
Delicious Southern Recipes

Wine Wednesday

How to Pair Wine and Chinese Food

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Courtesy of Kobrand.

Courtesy of Kobrand.

Wine and Chinese food tends to promote a strange response among wine writers, which can be summed up as “pair Chinese food with off-dry Riesling. Or Gewürztraminer.” Well, fine, but isn’t that sort of like saying “pair French food with white Burgundy” or “pair Italian food with a red wine?” Last I heard, Chinese cuisine had enormous regional variety and a culinary tradition that extends back, oh, a few thousand years or so. 7 wine pairings for everything from Americanized Kung Pao Chicken to traditional salted baked duck tongue. »

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Grace in the Kitchen

Sardines, My Solitary Pleasure

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Open-Face Sardine Sandwiches with Tangy Aioli  // © Sally Gall

Pair these simple open-faced sandwiches with a fresh, lemony white like an Albariño. / © Sally Gall

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

Oh, Costco, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways: Chinese sausages, chapati flour, Israeli quark, Lundberg rice (at a fraction of retail) AND eight packs of Season brand sardines packed in olive oil (yay!). My go-to quick meal often includes opening a tin of sardines, mixing them with some type of onion and mayo or mustard and slapping it on grainy crackers. These open-face sandwiches are definitely a more complex step up but still fast, easy and supernutritious. After my long Saturday morning runs, this so totally hits the spot. My kids aren't convinced (neither is my husband, but at least he doesn't wrinkle his nose), so I tend to enjoy them in relative solitude, which is all right by me, especially after a long run.

It doesn't hurt to wash it all down with a cold, crisp IPA or two—I especially like Lagunitas and Sierra Nevada—but then the whole solitude thing can seem a little depressing (by appearances only). I'm reminded of MFK Fisher (that goddess) and how she prepared herself elegant meals that she enjoyed with wine all by herself. SEE RECIPE »

Related: More Recipes Using Sardines
Cheap and Delicious Recipes
Affordable Recipes for a Crowd

Grace in the Kitchen

Ribs Under Pressure

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Blueberry-Glazed Ribs // © Petrina Tinslay

Blueberry glaze makes the edges on these ribs nice and sticky. / © Petrina Tinslay

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

Way back in April, when blueberries were crazy cheap, I made a huge batch of this yummy syrup to keep on hand for all sorts of great applications (ice cream, yogurt, pound cake, etc.).  Last night, though, as I was rummaging through my fridge, I spotted the syrup and remembered these ribs I made a while ago. Easy enough to pick up at my supermarket, but it was already 6 p.m. and cooking ribs conventionally takes an awfully long time.

The pressure cooker, however, is kind of amazing at quickly braising tougher cuts of meats (also beans, stock, and grains, among other things). I sliced two racks into four-rib sections and nestled them into the pot, to which I added a spice blend of garlic, onion, black pepper, cumin, smoked salt and just enough water to fill about 1/3 of the cooker. Once covered and on high power for 20 minutes, the ribs were fork tender. Just enough time to get the blueberry glaze done. A quick pop on the grill, and 10 minutes later they were on the table. I know I sound like a broken record around the Test Kitchen, but pressure cookers are truly astonishing! SEE RECIPE »

Related: More Ribs Recipes
Pressure Cooker Tips
Recipes Using Blueberries

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