Do Bay Leaves REALLY Add Flavor To Food? Experts Make Their Case.

I’m never happier than when I’m at home on a leisurely weekend, keeping an eye on the stove while a big pot of homemade stock, soup or pasta sauce bubbles away for hours. And since a lot of those long-simmering recipes call for bay leaves, I’ve dutifully dropped one or two of the leaves into pots for years with the faith that I was infusing the liquid with some elusive-yet-magical essence.

But when I sat down to eat, I often wondered: Do I actually taste the bay leaf, or am I just imagining that I do? Come to think of it, what do bay leaves even taste like? Are they worth the money? And when a recipe calls for a bay leaf, does that mean dried or fresh? Can they be used interchangeably?

I realized that while I liked the ritual of dropping those leaves into simmering pots of comfort

Read More

The 2 Rules for Eating to Fight Climate Change

After wasting less food and eating less meat, all other changes a person might make are marginal, experts said, among them eating locally, organically, and seasonally. Moreover, the climate impact of those food choices is in many cases contradictory. “I work in food, and it’s confusing for me,” Cabrera, of the NRDC, told me. “Is this lettuce better than this lettuce? Consumers are faced with so many choices, and it is really hard to know.”

Humanely raised, local meat, for instance, can produce more emissions than meat coming from a concentrated industrial operation, Clark told me. Cows in concentrated animal-feeding operations are generally slaughtered at 12 to 18 months of age, while cows raised exclusively on pastures typically live twice as long. “The cow that lives for longer is going to emit more methane over the course of its lifespan,” he said, though he added that there

Read More