Celebrating Day of the Dead With a Spread of Beloved Recipes

Mexico’s Dia De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebrates loved ones who have passed. Some families put together an ofrenda, an altar created in their honor, featuring photographs and the deceased’s favorite foods and drinks. Other families picnic at th…

Mexico’s Dia De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebrates loved ones who have passed. Some families put together an ofrenda, an altar created in their honor, featuring photographs and the deceased’s favorite foods and drinks. Other families picnic at the burial sites of their loved ones. “When you travel to the cemetery to feast and celebrate the lives of your ancestors,” Mexican Chef Tello Carreon (formerly of Nixta in St. Louis) says, “It’s an experience you don’t really forget.”

While Mexico is known for its street food, the variety of vendors setting up shop depends on the day of the week and time of the day. You might be craving esquites, a cup brimming with boiled corn off the cob, dressed in a combination of lime, chile, salt, butter, mayo, and cheese; however, if it’s mid-day or earlier, you’ll have to wait until after dinner to get your fix. That’s not the case with tamales. Wrapped in corn husk and filled with meats, cheese, or sweets, tamales can be found on every corner, throughout the day. This inexpensive food is commonly grabbed on the go for breakfast—en route to a Dia De Los Muertos ofrenda, perhaps—with some vendors offering it up in a bolillo (a Mexican baguette, if you will).

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The Great Layer Cake Mystery of 2020

Tenth Helpings is a humor column from our culture critic, Ella Quittner, illustrated by Olivia de Recat.

The Beginnings: A Trail of Cake Crumbs
“Hit me with a Two,” I said, jogging into the kitchen, mask dangling off my face. Read More…

Tenth Helpings is a humor column from our culture critic, Ella Quittner, illustrated by Olivia de Recat.


The Beginnings: A Trail of Cake Crumbs

“Hit me with a Two,” I said, jogging into the kitchen, mask dangling off my face.

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Perfecting the Art of Breadfacing

Tenth Helpings is a monthly humor column from our food culture critic and Absolute Best Test-er, Ella Quittner, and illustrated by Olivia de Recat.

The idea behind a sensory deprivation tank is straightforward. Remove a person’s access to external s…

Tenth Helpings is a monthly humor column from our food culture critic and Absolute Best Test-er, Ella Quittner, and illustrated by Olivia de Recat.


The idea behind a sensory deprivation tank is straightforward. Remove a person’s access to external stimuli like noise and light so that they may achieve therapeutic relief. The idea behind submerging one’s eyes, nose, face, as well as parts of one’s neck and scalp into various loaves of bread isn’t quite as straightforward—but for some, produces comparable results.

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Is Delhi’s Street Food Culture Over As We Know It?

Delhi bustles on a normal day: Customers crowd into shophouses, chic cafés plate continental fusion, and five-rupee cups of chai fly out of stalls. But all of this came to a complete grinding halt when Delhi was named one of the country’s largest hotsp…

Delhi bustles on a normal day: Customers crowd into shophouses, chic cafés plate continental fusion, and five-rupee cups of chai fly out of stalls. But all of this came to a complete grinding halt when Delhi was named one of the country’s largest hotspots for COVID-19, and a nationwide lockdown was mandated from March through May. Despite the nearly 80,000 confirmed cases in June, restrictions were lifted as the lockdown proved to be unaffordable.

Even as street food vendors slowly reopen their stalls, there is the unshakable realization that gathering publicly over food is now not only no longer feasible, but also dangerous. So how must the street food industry adapt in order to survive?

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How Kibbeh Paved the Way for This Syrian Refugee’s Freedom

Fatima’s kitchen is quiet. It’s six o’clock in the evening, and sirens are wailing to signal the onset of curfew. The streets of Amman are deserted, storefronts are shuttered, schools and mosques are empty, the border is sealed. Anyone who leaves their…

Fatima’s kitchen is quiet. It’s six o’clock in the evening, and sirens are wailing to signal the onset of curfew. The streets of Amman are deserted, storefronts are shuttered, schools and mosques are empty, the border is sealed. Anyone who leaves their home before 10 o’clock the following morning will be arrested. Thousands who have attempted to defy curfew have been taken by roving military patrols.

To Fatima, being trapped at home isn’t really the hardest part—it’s the uncertainty of being able to afford rent and food on a steadily dwindling income. But she is prepared, hopeful even. This isn’t the first crisis she’s lived through.

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Padma Lakshmi’s Prized Family Recipe: Crispy Masala Dosas With Coconut Chutney

Padma Lakshmi poses a difficult question to her daughter, Krishna, in the third episode of her new Hulu docu-series, Taste the Nation: “Do you prefer American pancakes to dosas?” Dosa being the paper-thin, crispy-edged, savory South Indian crepes made …

Padma Lakshmi poses a difficult question to her daughter, Krishna, in the third episode of her new Hulu docu-series, Taste the Nation: “Do you prefer American pancakes to dosas?” Dosa being the paper-thin, crispy-edged, savory South Indian crepes made of ground lentils and rice flour that she grew up eating three of in one sitting, and American pancakes being the fluffy stacks topped with butter and syrup. After some deliberation, Krishna replies, “I like pancakes...but I think I prefer dosas to waffles.”

Lakshmi has dealt with the duality of her food identities as an Indian-American person since she moved to the States when she was four years old. The pitting of dosas—which are her most nostalgic, homey comfort food—against the diner staple isn’t something she does often. Instead, she makes room for both in her Sunday brunches at home with her daughter, and applies that mindset to the rest of her life too. She doesn’t have to choose to be Indian or American on any given day.

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The Forgotten Inventor of the Fluffernutter Sandwich

I never cared for Fluffernutter sandwiches as a kid—they always struck me as a kind of “nothing” food. Two slices of white bread thickly smeared with peanut butter and a spread made from corn syrup, sugar, egg whites, and vanilla flavoring amounted to …

I never cared for Fluffernutter sandwiches as a kid—they always struck me as a kind of “nothing” food. Two slices of white bread thickly smeared with peanut butter and a spread made from corn syrup, sugar, egg whites, and vanilla flavoring amounted to little more than a sickly-sweet mushy mess. I’d eat them only at friends’ houses, and was always happier to have mac and cheese or tuna salad instead.

In the fall of 2011, I moved from Delaware to Massachusetts for college and found myself, all of a sudden, completely friendless. After a few drab meals in its grey dining hall, the freshmen class—myself included—started craving snacks.

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21 Stories About the Strongest Women We Know

Today is International Woman’s Day, and the food industry, like most others, is rife with various -isms that can make it especially difficult for women to succeed. As a female-founded media company, we’re committed to covering the stories of women who’…

Today is International Woman’s Day, and the food industry, like most others, is rife with various -isms that can make it especially difficult for women to succeed. As a female-founded media company, we’re committed to covering the stories of women who’ve succeeded in the culinary world, past and present.

For some of these women, history has been unkind to their memory—only now is the world rediscovering what they gave us. Others are highly visible, with names you’ve probably heard, yet their stories, too, are more textured than often recounted. In the coming years, we’ll continue working to tell these stories. There are still so many waiting to be heard. But here are some.

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D Is for Diversity in Food (& Why It Matters)

What makes your good food “good?” The ABCs of Good Food will attempt to answer that (and ask more questions along the way). We’re hoping to clarify jargon, highlight underrepresented issues, and help you feel a little less paralyzed in the egg aisle.

What makes your good food “good?" The ABCs of Good Food will attempt to answer that (and ask more questions along the way). We’re hoping to clarify jargon, highlight underrepresented issues, and help you feel a little less paralyzed in the egg aisle.


what is diversity in food?

“Diversity” is defined as the “condition or fact of being different or varied.” Diversity in food then, can mean a few different things: For one, the representation of all cuisines and culture. Or, the array of nutrients needed for a full, well-rounded diet. Or, the variety of crops grown on a farm.

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Meet Hilsa, the Beloved Fish That Connects Bengalis

Where and how one sources, cooks, and devours hilsa, the fish beloved across the Indian subcontinent, conveys a lot about one’s Bengali roots. In the 1947 Indian Partition, Bengal was divided along religious lines, and Muslims fled to East Bengal, whil…

Where and how one sources, cooks, and devours hilsa, the fish beloved across the Indian subcontinent, conveys a lot about one’s Bengali roots. In the 1947 Indian Partition, Bengal was divided along religious lines, and Muslims fled to East Bengal, while a majority-Hindu population stayed in West Bengal (an Indian state). Later, in 1971, East Bengal became the independent nation of Bangladesh.

Bengalis divide into two major groups: Bangal and Ghoti. “Bangal” refers to Bengalis from East Bengal, while “Ghoti” refers to those native to West Bengal. Perhaps surprisingly, the Bangal-Ghoti divide is largely innocuous amongst Bengalis, sparking fun debates such as how hilsa—a fish adored across the Indian subcontinent, but particularly in Bengal—should be prepared.

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