Cook's Country Subscription: Good News/Bad News Christmas Gift

A friend in NYC has once again given us a year’s subscription to Cook’s Country - a nice magazine with interesting recipes and great photos of food.

The good news? My SO just loves this magazine and pours over it as if it were porn and he was horny as hell. He will salivate at every recipe and start making plans to make this or make that.

The bad news? I am the schmuck who has to go out and buy the ingredients - and I swear, Cook’s Country just delights in adding wildly expensive, esoteric tidbits to every recipe. It seems like I am always out there trying to find 250 grams of fresh Yemeni Yak cheese, or 6 ounces of powdered Swiss Edelweiss root, or 1/2 pound of extra lean, ground Panda, or 3 tsp of Hummingbird saliva.

Yes, I am aware you can substitute - Yak cheese looks and tastes like Velvetta, Edelweiss root is about the same as white pepper, Panda really does taste like chicken and mixing sugar and water is about the same as Hummingbird saliva - but still…this magazine drives me nuts!

My SO is a purist - so we now have large bottles of spices that we spent a fortune to buy and have used only three grains in one recipe; we have kitchen utensils that look like parts of an alien spaceship that nobody can remember what they are used for, and I don’t even want to mention some of the fresh ingredients that required going to an international market and having employees special order from some distributor in Tibet.

Our “friend” in NYC just thinks this is all too hilarious…graciously taking my SO profuse thanks and then relishing my rather icy acknowledgment of said gift subscription.

Suck it up, bro. Cook’s is a great magazine, and the recipes are worth the extra spices. But what kind of weird equipment are we talking about? We read the mag religiously, and the only strange equipment I recall is the monthly “What the fuck is this thing?” question. You know you aren’t supposed to by those, don’t you? They are just things people find at garage sales and in grandma’s attic. :stuck_out_tongue:

Is this different from Cooks Illustrated or just a regional name difference?

It’s a secondary magazine by the same people.


There’s a wall of 25-30 kitchen gadgets in Williams-Sonoma stores and I play that game there; What is that thing? The last one was a gizmo for deveining shrimp.


Then you have to show him this…

Thanks for the link! I’ve been looking for such a recipe, but all the ones I’ve found require a microwave oven and a Pyrex[sup]TM[/sup] cup. It gets the job done, but doesn’t have that traditional flavor I remember from my childhood.

The only criticism I have is that the author didn’t include instructions when preparing the recipe on an electric range. Guess I’ll have set aside a few hours on Sunday to to experiment a litttle.

Huh? The Cook’s Country magazines I’ve seen have all featured Americana recipes calling for nothing more esoteric than Cream of Mushroom Soup. What country does *your *Cook’s Country come from?

Yeah, I cook almost exclusively from America’s Test Kitchen recipes, and I rarely have a problem with ingredients. I mean, there are always a lot of steps, and the preparation is weird, but the ingredients are pretty basic. Cook’s Country in particular seems to stick to American favorites.

Yeah, I’m surprised too. Perhaps the OP could provide an example?

I think the OP is just making a joke. If any magazine requires you to search out strange and inacessible spices, it isn’t Cook’s Country. Try Martha Stewart Living for recipes that require odd little bits of things, available only from one vendor in New York City. Even worse than her ingredients are some of the supplies for craft projects. If you want the exact color twine she uses, or the glassine paper, or even the color of glitter, you are going to have to pay big.

Or what? You don’t HAVE to do any such thing. Quit whining and be gracious about it.

If anything, America’s Test Kitchen recipes are a bit bland. Vermont is not Texas (which is halfway between Mexico & Louisiana). But the “mechanical” instructions are excellent & I can adjust the spices myself.

The OP gave us some absurd, invented ingredients. Perhaps he’ll come back to let us know what he finds too exotic.

“Oregáno? What the hell?”

Heh. I got Modernist Cuisine at Home for Christmas. The OP doesn’t know ANYTHING about esoteric ingredients compared to that.