Martha+Tom

Technique

Meet Grinder

As much as I love to cook, I am really not a fan of kitchen gadgets. This is partially out of necessity; our very small kitchen doesn’t have room to store every species of specialized tool for making every conceivable cooking task a breeze. I also have a deep aversion to spending money, so when […]

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Croquetas Two Ways

When it comes to Spanish bar food, I don’t need much more than a plate full of jamón serrano to accompany a few cañas of beer. But for Martha, there is no better tapa than the croqueta: a deep fried little log of gooey delight (beer doesn’t hurt here either). Always looking for ways to […]

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Pasta: Cappellacci dei Briganti

In mid-nineteenth century Italy, as power passed from one faction to another fighting to control the unification of the country, many lower-class people — ever ignored by political elites — resorted to brigantaggio, or brigandage, both as a means of securing a living and a form of resistance against occupiers foreign and domestic. In the […]

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Making Tamales

With the feast of our Lady of Guadalupe right around the corner — tomorrow, in fact — I took the opportunity to become acquainted with one of the most important traditions surrounding this sacred festival: tamales. While I’m an avid tamale consumer, I’ve never actually made them. So when I heard the kitchen at Church […]

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Bread: How much do you knead?

My ideal bread—the bread I want to have for breakfast every morning, around my sandwiches at lunch, and to sop up the remains of whatever sauce adorned my dinner—is a crisp-crusted, chewy, open-crumbed bread, flecked with bran. This is the kind of bread perfect with a slice of cheese, some large-grained cured sausage and a […]

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A Martha & Tom Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday. This was the second year in a row in which I was cooking in isolation from my extended family in Michigan since relocating to Minnesota. I miss having my whole family together and all their different contributions to the meal. On the other hand, cooking in Minneapolis for a […]

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Stuffing or dressing?

It’s almost Thanksgiving,which means the various food blogs I read are dissecting every aspect of the annual feast. When the stuffing versus dressing debate came up on Serious Eats, I was taken aback by the certainty with which two authors brushed aside the controversy. First Erin Zimmer, in a post comparing boxed stuffing options, offered the caveat: […]

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Is delayed fermentation worth it?

When someone I respect as much as Peter Reinhart claims to have discovered a technique that “has the potential to change the… bread landscape in America,” it’s worth taking notice. In The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Reinhart writes: [Delayed fermentation] has the potential to change the entire bread landscape in America. I’ve begun teaching it to […]

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Fall Food: Braised Pork, Apples and Cabbage

The light chill today was a reminder that fall — my favorite cooking season — is upon us. Fall brings many hearty possibilities ruled out by summer’s heat; suddenly it is possible, even desirable, to have the oven on for a few hours. Enter the braise—meat and vegetables stewed in rich liquid until tender. This […]

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Pickled Peppers

Let’s be honest: I’m not the pickling artist in the family. Normally I leave these things to others, but something needed to be done with the two banana peppers from last month’s trip to the market—they were starting to look a little sad. Wishfully thinking about pizza possibilities, I decided there was no choice but […]

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