Domesticate ME!’s Father’s Day Gift Guide For Super Cool Dads

Domesticate ME! Father's Day Gift GuideNot gonna lie, I usually forget about Mother’s/Father’s Day until days before the holiday. And this no good, very bad habit inevitably leads to guilt, panicked online shopping, and scary expedited shipping fees. Not this year! This year, I’m getting my act together, friends. Or at least trying to. I have yet to figure out what to get my dad, but I take pride in the fact that I’m at least thinking about it almost two full weeks in advance. (Adulting!)Giving myself an extended Father’s Day brainstorming period is crucial, since my dad is impossible to shop for. A dude with obscure (and rather expensive) taste, he’s not really into cooking, grilling, or mixology accoutrements, which are my gifting mainstays. However, just because my dad falls outside my gifting wheelhouse doesn’t mean that yours does. And...
Read More >>

2015 Holiday Gift Guide For Domestic Gods and Goddesses (and a Giveaway!)

Domesticate-Me-Gift-Guide-For-Domestic-Gods-and-Godesses-2015It’s present season, people. Let’s get serious.Obviously the holidays aren’t just about presents, but they’re one of the best side perks, and I take my gift giving (and receiving) very seriously. Few things make me happier wrapping up the perfect present (I worked in a boutique when I was 16 and picked up some pretty boss gift-wrapping skills), and then watching someone unwrap it. Especially if they have a Logan-esque tendency to completely lose their shit and shower me with expletive-laced compliments. I'm all goosebump-y just thinking about it!Anyhoo, I know many of you may have done some serious damage on Black Friday/Cyber Monday, but if you’ve still got a chef/food lover/domestic god(dess) to cross off your list, I’ve rounded up some of my very favorite gifting items below. And if you’d rather receive these things, simply forward this post along...
Read More >>

2014 Holiday Gift Guide for Domestic Gods and Goddesses (and a Giveaway!)

domesticate-me-2014-holiday-gift-guide-for-cooks-foodies-chefsPRESENTSSSSSS!!!I love them.I adore receiving presents, but I especially enjoy giving them. In fact, I find few things in life more glorious than watching someone open the perfect gift. My roommate is particularly awesome in this respect, as his reaction to unwrapping something badass is similar to this kid’s, except with a lot more expletives and bear hugging. It’s my favorite. (It’s also why I toy with the idea of giving him a puppy for Christmas every year. Then I remember we’d have to keep the puppy. Dammit.)In case you have a chef/food lover/domestic god(dess) in your life, I’ve put together a handy list of fabulous things that are guaranteed to elicit that “OHMAHGODDDD!” response (and maybe even excitement tears). And if you'd rather receive these items, I highly suggest forwarding this post along to those shopping for you... ...
Read More >>

Kitchen Crush: Summer 2014 Edition

Kitchen-crush-wishlist-summer-2014-editionYesterday, my roommate walked into the office to look for something, and after having to move several of my outdated electronic devices and three piles of clothes, he screamed, “Why do you have so much stuff?!”I tend not to respond to such queries because the answer is obvious. I am a hoarder. We know this, we have accepted this, and I refuse to be made to feel badly about what is clearly a genetic disorder.While I do my best to control them, my hoarding tendencies are obviously strongest when it comes to collecting culinary/domestic items. I’m fully aware that I don’t need anything else for my kitchen, but there are a lot of things that I want. So many that I’ve started keeping a year-round wish list just to keep track.Said list has gotten embarrassingly long, but I thought...
Read More >>

Domestic Details: How To Clean Your Oven

Step-by-Step-Tutorial-on-the-best-way-to-clean-your-oven-using-all-natural-productsCleaning the oven seems pretty horrific, which is why most of us rarely do it, if ever. Heavy duty oven cleaning products are scary, and the thought of getting down on one’s hands and knees to scrub charred gunk while inhaling toxic fumes is both stressful and exhausting (especially for individuals with very little upper body strength.)Unfortunately, there are times in life when performing this task becomes unavoidable. Perhaps you moved into a new pad and the previous tenant screwed you with a disgustingly stained oven, or you mistakenly thought baking a fully loaded pizza straight on the rack was a good idea. Maybe you smoked out your apartment and almost caused a deadly grease fire because bacon fat had somehow managed to congeal on the oven floor, or your kitchen fills with a sketchy smell every time you pre-heat...
Read More >>

Domestic Details: 13 Items to Stock in Your Fridge

13-Essential-Items-To-Stock-In-Your-FridgeStocking your fridge can be a daunting task, which I’m guessing is why so many of you seem to avoid it. I’ve noticed recently that most of my friends’ refrigerators contain some combination of booze, cheese, hummus, baby carrots, and old milk, which is both weird and gross. It’s also not the most inspiring ingredient list for a quick meal, which perpetuates some very expensive Seamless habits.When questioned, these fridge offenders often say something like, “Whatever, Serena. I’m not going to spend my money buying like a million things I’m never going to use!” I find this to be very melodramatic, since you only really need 13. And once you stock your fridge with the essentials, it will be infinitely easier to conjure your inner domestic god(dess) and whip up awesome meals on the reg.For your convenience, I’ve compiled a...
Read More >>

Domestic Details: 5 Lessons From Culinary School that Every Cook Should Know

the-5-most-important-lessons-i-learned-at-le-cordon-bleu-culinary-schoolPeople often ask me about my experience at Le Cordon Bleu and the very important things that I studied there. While I did learn all manner of fancy techniques and recipes over the course of culinary school, the truth is, I use very few of those skills on a day-to-day basis. I no longer blowtorch the feathers off of poultry multiple times a week, I can't remember the last time I "turned" a vegetable, and I certainly don’t plan on bludgeoning live crabs or gutting multiple fish in my apartment’s tiny kitchen any time soon. I’m guessing you don’t either.When I reflect upon my culinary education, I’m much more grateful for the big picture takeaways than the mastery of specific knife skills or complicated recipes. The majority of these teachings are so simple (i.e. tasting your...
Read More >>

Domestic Details: Everything You Need To Know About Salt

everything-you-need-to-know-about-cooking-with-saltEveryone knows that salt is the best.If you eat food, I’m assuming that you have some sort of salt in your kitchen. Good for you! Salt is easily the most ubiquitous and versatile ingredient in the universe, since it’s used for everything from curing and pickling to flavoring sauces and dressing up a cocktail glass. Unless you happen to be on a low-sodium diet, there’s a good chance you sprinkle a little bit of salt on most of the things you put in your mouth.While salt seems like a pretty straightforward substance, there are actually several varieties of the stuff. It can be coarse or fine, harvested from mines or distilled from sea water, iodized or additive-free. There are also infinity types of seasoned salt (wassup, bacon salt?), and it even comes in a rainbow of...
Read More >>

Domestic Details: How to Roast Garlic

how-to-roast-garlicRoasted garlic is a truly beautiful thing, friends. If you’ve never tried it, I’m unattractively jealous because you are in for a magical, life-changing culinary experience.When you roast garlic, all kinds of wonderful things happen. As the garlic softens in the oven, its aggressive flavors mellow significantly, and what you end up with when you pull the gorgeously caramelized head from the oven is a nutty, slightly sweet spread. This roasted garlic paste is almost buttery in both flavor and texture, and it is beyond glorious. Plus, it will make your kitchen smell like some sort of intoxicating dreamland. For real.The truth is, we all need a little more roasted garlic in our lives. This stuff has the ability to take all of your favorite recipes to the next level, and “Roasted Garlic (insert food here)” just sounds fancy. Spread it...
Read More >>

Domestic Details: 10 Tips for Cooking Perfect Pasta

10-tips-for-cooking-perfect-pastaI appreciate pasta, which is essentially the little black dress of the food world. It can be dressed up six ways from Sunday, but it’s also a simple thing to stock in your pantry and break out on the days that you aren’t feeling overly ambitious or creative. With minimal effort and a few accessories (hello, store-bought tomato sauce), a box of dried pasta can be turned into a fabulous meal in less than 15 minutes, and it’s pretty much a guaranteed crowd-pleaser. What's not to love?While cooking pasta is seemingly idiot-proof, there are a few common misconceptions and pitfalls that can lead to not-so-nice noodles. If you’ve ever ended up with a “pasta brick” or slippery spaghetti that refuses to hold sauce, you know exactly what I’m talking about. So, in the hope of improving your basic...
Read More >>