Domestic Details: Meat and Poultry Internal Temperature Guide

instant-read-meat-thermometer-oxo-2One of the great domestic challenges in this life is cooking meat to the desired level of doneness. Nothing is more frustrating (or embarrassing) than serving a raw chicken to friends or slicing into a steak that’s 50 shades of grey in the center. But how, many of you ask, do you know when your meat is done? The truth is, there are several ways to determine doneness with each type of meat. For example, the juices of your roast chicken should run clear when it’s fully cooked, and a medium rare steak should feel like the flesh below your thumb when you gently press your middle finger to the tip of your thumb. If reading that last sentence made you feel confused/panicky/angry, relax. There is a very simple solution that does not involve analyzing juices or getting handsy with a...
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Harvest Pumpkin Soup with Candied Bacon

harvest-pumpkin-soup-with-candied-bacon-13Ahhhhh fall, the best time of year. As I may have previously mentioned, I’m a big fan of the chill in the air, changing leaves, warm drinks, and the mass purchasing of new boots and sweaters. Since it was 80 degrees in New York yesterday, I have not yet had the chance to enjoy the first three items on that list, but I’m not overly concerned. Despite the unseasonably warm weather, I, along with most New Yorkers, am still embracing fall, sweating through my favorite jackets and crushing baked goods (see: Apple Cinnamon Doughnut Holes) like it’s not a degree over 65. I’m nothing if not seasonally dedicated. One of my favorite things about fall is the pumpkin mania. Post-labor day, everyone seems to go batshit over pumpkins, and I am 100% on board with the craziness....
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Skillet Lasagna with Turkey Sausage and Vegetables

skillet-lasagna-with-turkey-sausage-and-vegetables-8-2I'm almost positive that the last time I ate lasagna was November 14, 2009. I know it seems weird to be able to pinpoint the date, but both the day and the lasagna are etched in my brain for several reasons… After my college graduation, my bestie Fifi and I decided to go on a little trip to New Zealand. I packed my oversized backpack with 57 pounds of completely impractical clothing, traded in my trusty Motorola Razor for an international Blackberry at my mother’s request, and set off on my epic adventure. Having done almost zero advance travel planning, Fifi and I signed up for a well-known tour called The Kiwi Experience, boarded the big green bus, and hoped for the best. The two of us hostel-hopped around the country for a little over a month, doing all kinds of out-of-character, outdoorsy...
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Domestic Details: The 3 Knives You Need in Your Kitchen

the-3-knives-you-need-in-your-kitchenLet’s talk about knives, friends. For better of for worse, knives are your most important tools in the kitchen. And while most of you probably own several knives, I’ve recently realized that many of you may be “confused” when it comes to using them. I have witnessed friends tear meat with a serrated knife, crush tomatoes with a blunt chef’s blade, and chop vegetables with a boning knife, and while it’s upsetting to watch, I realize that it’s not really their fault. Many peeps don’t know what knives to buy, while others just purchase a whole fancy knife set that they don't know how to use, which is equally problematic. In the hope of clearing up this knife confusion, I would like to shed some light on the knives that you actually need in your kitchen and what each of them is...
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Apple Cinnamon Baked Doughnut Holes

apple-cinnamon-baked-doughnut-holes-2-2Let’s be honest, doughnuts rock. I’ve been big on doughnuts for as long as I can remember, probably because I was spoiled by really, really good ones during my formative years. The Colonel’s Bakery in Northeast Harbor, Maine, produces the most unbelievable, indescribably delicious doughnuts that I have ever tasted in my life. This gem of a bakery makes everything from light and fluffy glazed twists to cakey old-fashioned cinnamon doughnuts that make me want to invest in some pajama jeans and live in a house made entirely of doughnuts. That’s saying a lot, since you know I’m a big fan of both restrictive clothing and fancy homes. During my childhood summers, my family got Colonel’s doughnuts every Sunday, which was hands-down the best day of the week. My siblings and I used to spend an absurd amount of time...
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Red Quinoa and Roasted Butternut Squash Salad

red-quinoa-and-roasted-butternut-squash-salad-with-feta-pomegranate-and-toasted-walnutsI love my lunch break. Being “self-employed,” I have the luxury of taking the time to make myself something dope and eat at my fancy white desk while perusing the internet, making personal calls and catching up on some of my incredibly highbrow television shows. I have also been known to have a glass of wine or take a power nap on occasion. Besides my “social media hour” in the morning, lunch is easily my favorite part of the day. While I practically live for lunchtime, I recognize that some of you don’t have the luxury of enjoying a “European” midday meal. According to my sources, most people go out to grab a quick bite or order delivery to be eaten at their desks. (If my roommate is any indication of lunchtime trends, it is also common to send one’s assistant...
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The Dude Diet: Anniversary Edition

The-Dude-Diet-Anniversary-EditionIt’s a very special day, dudes. Exactly one year ago today, I wrote a short piece addressing the nutritional idiocy of my boyfriend/roommate, Logan, accompanied by a poorly depicted recipe for pork osso buco. I talked about Logan’s strangely intense love of burgers, cheese steaks, and pizza, and how I feared that based on his disturbing diet, he may not have many years left to live. It was honest and informative, but it was meant to be a one-off. A cathartic exercise, if you will. Therefore, I was very surprised when I received a flood of emails, texts and phone calls regarding the aforementioned post. (This overwhelming response was particularly shocking because, let’s be real, Domesticate Me! wasn’t nearly as fancy or popular back then.) People were intrigued. Was Logan really on a diet? Sort of. What exactly did this...
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Potato Rosti with Pancetta and Mozzarella

potato-rosti-with-pancetta-and-mozzarella-14I am very sad to inform you that at 9:17 pm EST on Sunday, September 15, 2013, I saw a mouse in my apartment. I was happily watching a movie with my roommate, when the aforementioned intruder casually walked across my living room and turned the corner into the hallway. I alerted Logan to the emergency at hand, to which his immediate reaction was, “Go see where it went! You have shoes on!!!” This wasn’t exactly the take-charge response I was hoping for, but whatever. He eventually got off the couch to assess the situation, wielding a cardboard box (not sure what he planned on doing with that deadly weapon), and after a minute or so, he announced that the mouse had disappeared. This was very discomforting. Mice don’t just “disappear.” They hide, and then they come back. They always come back. Logan...
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Domestic Details: 5 Spices You Need In Your Spice Cabinet

SpicesHello, friends! If you are confused by the lack of pictures of delicious food on your screen right now, please chillax. I’m doing something a little different today. Get on board because I’m about to drop some domestic knowledge bombs. Since acquiring my fancy culinary skill set, people constantly ask me all sorts of domestically-themed questions (which I obviously love because it makes me feel incredibly busy and important). Recently, I’ve realized that many friends have the same questions, and that it would be much more efficient to start answering them on the interweb where everyone can benefit. After all, I have so much domestic knowledge, and some of you have so little. It just seems unfair. I’m sure that a few of you are excellent and knowledgeable chefs and homemakers in your own right (fist bump), but I have a feeling that...
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Cauliflower “Fried Rice”

Cauliflower-Fried-Rice-3-2It’s Friday, so I felt like I’d tell you a little story about the time I went to fancy fat camp. You’re welcome. It was August of 2007, and I had barely survived a summer of hard work selling cowboy hats at beer festivals in Boulder, Colorado. Because I had devoted most of July to conducting a personal taste test of the burrito joints in Boulder and drinking my weight in hobo sangria, I wasn’t exactly in fighting shape. Therefore, when my bff Fifi asked if I would like to accompany her and her mother to Canyon Ranch for a week, I enthusiastically accepted. My 19-year-old ass was large and tired, and the thought of some R&R and detoxification in the Berkshires sounded like a dream come true. For those of you who have never heard of Canyon Ranch, it...
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