Cooking guides

As anyone who knows me will testify, I am a long way from Masterchef standards.In fact, it would be fair to say that in the few years I’ve been living away from home that the local takeaways must have experienced a sharp rise in sales due to my inability to work a stove.

After deciding to cook a meal from scratch a few nights ago I consulted my favourite resource to see if there were any websites that could suggest some interesting recipes to try out.A quick search on Google returned the site www.epicurious.com which was packed to the brim with interesting food related resources and hence a perfect candidate for a website review in Click.

Starting in the recipes section of the site you are invited to type in a keyword so that you can refine the search of meals to make based on one of the primary ingredients; for example I typed in ‘cheese’ which promptly returned over 3000 recipes with each one being rated and reviewed by users of the site.In total there are over 17,000 different recipes and many of the keywords I tried also returned photos of the finished meal along with perfect wine pairings.The site also makes a number of suggested recipes based on cuisine, the occasion, special considerations (e.g. Low carbs, no nuts etc), preparation time or simply preferred recipes chosen by the chef writers.Also featured in the recipes section is the forum where users of the site get together to discuss various tips and cooking techniques.

The cooking section of the site focuses more on cooking styles, techniques and tips that specific recipes and this is aided by a chefs tips section, technique videos along with a comprehensive good and wine dictionary.The food dictionary I would imagine being particularly important to someone new to cooking as if asked to ‘sauté’ something then this can be easily cross referenced rather than not knowing what to do and subsequently looking the fool.

The drinking section is very much like the recipe section but with the obvious difference that it talks about liquids rather than food.Simply type in a specific drink name or specific drink ingredient and a list of matches will be shown; typing in vodka returned 97 different drinks that I could make with the deadly Russian poison.Once again this area of the site includes a drinks forum, guides to different beers, spirits, wines and proper etiquette for their drinking as well as plenty other variations on the drinks theme.

To be completely honest this article has only scratched the surface of what this site has to offer and I’m going to be spending the next half an hour exploring the finer points which I simply couldn’t include in this article.If I were to name a few criticisms I would say that it is slightly too Americanised as the majority of featured restaurants are US based and all weights are in their imperial form although those used to the metric system can easily use http://convertalot.com to convert between the two.

I would like to think that if I were a house husband that I’d use this site and cook a few new and interesting recipes every week rather than have the same meals day in day out.I can never see myself spending my days indoors cooking so as sexist as it sounds I will unfortunately either have to find myself a wife who is prepared to do what I am not or confine my future cooking career to the weekends.If you have a spare couple of minutes today then do check it out as the site is free of charge and you will almost certainly find something among the many thousands of recipes to get your taste buds tingling.

About the Author – Chris Holgate works for Refresh Cartridges who supply a wide range of printer cartridges at the UK’s lowest prices.

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