We believe that dinner should be good every night of the week, not just when you have time to go the extra mile. That's part of the reason why Cook's Country exists: to make this want and need a reality for all. In this issue, we've rounded up a collection of tasty, foolproof recipes that will make home cooks ecstatic to get in the kitchen and to cook outdoors.
You'll find some dishes that will make you feel like a pit master in your own backyard and others that take vegetables you're familiar with and show you that their possibilities are endless. Oh, and we didn't forget about dessert: We've got plenty of summer treats for your sweet tooth, too.
Cook’s Country MagazineFind foolproof recipes for easy weeknight meals and regional favorites, pull-out recipe cards for 30-minute suppers, and much more.
Smoked Chicken Wings
I'm a sucker for a good chicken wing, and these smoky, crispy-skinned morsels don't disappoint. They have just enough smoke to add complexity without being overwhelming. They're brined to ensure the meat stays juicy, and they're finished with a bold, bright sauce that has just enough spice to keep me coming back for more. Frankly, it's hard to stop eating them. [GET THE RECIPE]
Weber Performer Deluxe Charcoal GrillThe convenience of gas plus the flavor of charcoal makes this grill a worthwhile investment.
I love an unapologetically sweet dessert, and this one delivers plenty of sweetness—without sacrificing the beautiful, summery flavor of in-season peaches. Plus, the dumplings are adorable. [GET THE RECIPE]
Williams-Sonoma Goldtouch Nonstick 8-Inch Square Cake PanPerfectly even golden color on our crumb cake and cornbread earned this pan the top spot.
I have a new love for this simple, comforting Southern sandwich. Fresh summertime tomatoes (packed with plenty of flavor) are ideal for this sandwich, but this recipe also accounts for how to make it work with out-of-season tomatoes. If this isn't considered an evergreen recipe, I'm not sure what can be categorized as one. [GET THE RECIPE]
Ziploc Brand Freezer Bags with Easy Open TabsThis bag stayed intact when filled with tomato sauce and dropped.
Hot Sesame Noodles with Pork
Sichuan peppercorns aren't hot, but they mess with your mouth in a different way—they have a strangely pleasurable numbing quality that I can't get enough of. And I love their uniquely piney, camphorous flavor. This dish is simply comforting, and if you crave extra spice, I strongly encourage you to make the Sichuan Chile Oil to drizzle on top (the oil is great on everything from eggs to pizza). [GET THE RECIPE]
Le Creuset 7¼ Quart Round Dutch OvenThis pot's broad cooking surface saves us time by allowing us to cook more food at once.
Pat-in-the-Pan Buttermilk Biscuits
A lot of biscuit recipes I've made are superbuttery and tender but very complicated to make—or, on the other hand, they're easy but make lackluster biscuits. These are the best of both worlds. They are rich and buttery but take 10 minutes to stir together. They're my new go-to biscuits (and I make a lot of biscuits). [GET THE RECIPE]
Checkered Chef Cooling RackUse a thin metal spatula to slide your finished biscuits onto this wire rack before brushing the top with softened butter.
Texas-Style Smoked Beef Ribs
What I like most about this recipe is the excess. The ribs are massive, rich, and primal, and the recipe is a long, drawn-out labor of love—built for the real meat and smoke enthusiast, which I am. Aside from the ribs, I really dig the story of Richard Funk and Desert Oak Barbecue. Ah, Texas. [GET THE RECIPE]
Proof That Everything Is Bigger in TexasHe started with a food truck, a relatively low-risk venture. It took off.
Thai-Style Fried Chicken
I felt like my eyes bugged out of my head, cartoon-style, the first time I tasted this chicken. The sweet, sour, salty, and funky punch of the sauce is unexpected and so delicious. Usually I shy away from frying at home, but I’ll be making an exception for this dish. [GET THE RECIPE]
OXO Good Grips 11" Balloon WhiskWith an ergonomic Santoprene rubber handle and a balanced, lightweight feel, this whisk will feel like an extension of your hand.
Sichuan Chili Oil
My ultimate fridge door condiment is Sichuan chili oil, and this recipe cuts down the sometimes hours it takes to make a good one. This oil is easy and fast to make; plus, it pretty much goes with any quick weeknight dinner. [GET THE RECIPE]
Rösle Fine Mesh Strainer, Round Handle, 7.9 inches, 20 cmThis strainer’s sturdy construction makes it worth its high price: It looked as good as new even after our serious abuse testing.
Miso Honey Butter Corn
When I had the chance to taste this in the test kitchen, I was wowed by how the savory ingredients (white miso and soy sauce) complemented the sweet, crispy bites of corn. Also, I'm a big fan of that fact that this recipe only requires two steps; it's clear that this dish is also very easy and quick to make. [GET THE RECIPE]
OXO Good Grips Non-Stick 12-Inch Open FrypanThis pan's gently flared sides and lightweight design make it easy to load, unload, and move.
Gyros (pronounced "YEE-ros") have always been one of the dishes I've told myself in the past I would never attempt to make at home. At the time it was with good reason; most of the recipes online call for marinating the meat for several days or for home cooks to use some unrealistic technique to replicate a spit. I convinced myself that some things just taste better—and could only be made—at a restaurant. True, when you don't have the right recipe on hand. False when you do. [GET THE RECIPE]
ThermoWorks Thermapen Mk4This thermometer is dead accurate, fast, and so streamlined and simple that it's a breeze to use.
Grilled Zucchini with Red Pepper Sauce
My love for vegetables made me naturally gravitate toward this dish. There are many things to love about this side: it uses a classic method for grilling zucchini, and it gives home cooks the opportunity to try this vegetable in a new setting, outside of its watery form. [GET THE RECIPE]