Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder

02 Dec 2004, 8:47 a.m.

Includes A Link To Wikipedia!

Hi, reader. I wrote this in 2004 and it's now more than five years old. So it may be very out of date; the world, and I, have changed a lot since I wrote it! I'm keeping this up for historical archive purposes, but the me of today may 100% disagree with what I said then. I rarely edit posts after publishing them, but if I do, I usually leave a note in italics to mark the edit and the reason. If this post is particularly offensive or breaches someone's privacy, please contact me.

My third article in Salon and the only one that talks about Leonard the whole time.

It's worth it to read a Cook's Illustrated, even if, like me, you seldom cook. The articles read as very accessible lab reports, with hypotheses, trials and errors, and conclusions (recipes). I find them much more useful than yet another three-recipe column that begins, "While staying in a small hotel in Tuscany ..." and extols the virtues of fresh, seasonal ingredients but doesn't teach any skills or methodology.

If I could write this article over again, I would include more carping about food safety, more evangelism about teaching first principles rather than just recipes, more examples, and less cutesiness. But half a loaf is better than none.

Thanks to Kerry Lauerman and Amy Reiter for improving my piece a heck of a lot.