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Chef John's Buttermilk Biscuits

Reviewed: Dec. 24, 2014
Chef John, this is the absolute BEST biscuit recipe I have ever tried. It reminds me of the biscuits my grnadmother used to make. She mixed them in a bowl and squeezed them out by hand. It was a work of art I witnessed watching her. And they were so light they melted in your mouth. Chef John you have knocked this one out of the park. These biscuits took me back to my Grandmothers house! What a delicious gift on Christmas Eve! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!
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Cooking Level: Expert

Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

White Chocolate Covered Pretzels

Reviewed: Dec. 21, 2014
I could not get my white thin enough. Awful wasted time and money. not more.
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Photo by Trisha Coleman

Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Jamie's Cranberry Spinach Salad

Reviewed: Dec. 17, 2014
Well, nobody "raved" about this. In fact, out of 10 dinner guests, no one even commented on it, but it was well eaten. I thought it was good but I have had better salads, so this fell short of a 5 star. I would not make this again simply because there are better ones out there. If you plan to try this, one suggestion I would strongly make is not to toast the slivered almonds in butter. Once they cooled and were on the cold salad, they were greasy because the butter had solidified. If I were going to make this salad again, I would definitely toast the almonds the dry method way like I always do.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Best Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie

Reviewed: Dec. 10, 2014
It makes very pretty, huge cookies, but they are WAY too sweet and rather bland. My kids loved them.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Living In: Augusta, Georgia, USA

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

Reviewed: Dec. 7, 2014
I added 1 1/2 chocolate chips to enhance the sweetness. They turned out great! Not too chocolaty or sweet!
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Columbiana, Alabama, USA
Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Zesty Slow Cooker Chicken Barbecue

Reviewed: Dec. 6, 2014
This was awesome!!! I used Sweet Baby Ray's Sauce, Olive Garden Italian Dressing (bought at Sam's), and at the end put it on a bun topped it with some Bone Sucking Sauce and pickles. Wonderful!!!
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Pumpkin Turkey Chili

Reviewed: Nov. 28, 2014
We make this every Halloween before going trick or treating. It's really good and festive!
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Home Town: Mchenry, Illinois, USA
Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Black Magic Cake

Reviewed: Nov. 27, 2014
Perfect. Just... perfect. Like others stated I was put off by the thin batter. I'm such a kitchen klutz (and a regular klutz) that I figured I had missed a step or ingredient somewhere. Convinced that the cake was ruined, I took the loss and put it into the stove anyway. What came out after nearly 55 minutes (40 minnutes wasn't enough. The cake was still really wet) was pure bliss. It was chocolaty. It was moist. My mom thoroughly enjoyed it, though initially she wanted nothing to do with the cake out of fear that it would taste like coffee (but who doesn't like coffee? Weird). I couldn't find a single hint of it in the cake. Just a rich chocolate flavor. Too bad in my hurry I opted for frosting-in-a-can. Nothing wrong with it, but I'd love to make a frosting that pairs with it. Definitely my new go-to chocolate cake recipe!
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Cooking Level: Beginning

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

Double Chocolate Brownie Cake

Reviewed: Nov. 27, 2014
Just baked this cake to take for thanksgiving dinner and it looks wonderful. I tasted the batter and it was awesome good and I tasted a few crumbs from the cake and it was rich and moist and chocolatey. Mind you, I'm not a girl crazy about chocolate cake. I did this at my family's request. These are the adjustments I made based on the suggestions from the reviews: 1. Duncan Hines devil's food cake mix 2. Exact amount of pudding mix and eggs 3. Light sour cream 4. 1/4 cup oil and 1/4 cup melted pure butter 5. Chocolate milk (whole milk) instead of water 6. 1 cup of mini chocolate chips instead of 2 cups 7. 1/2 tsp almond flavor 8. Stir chips in a little bit of the cake mix to prevent chips from sinking 9. Dust cocoa powder in pan 10. Since I only had a small bundt pan, I used part of the batter to make 5 cupcakes and the rest of the batter in the bundt pan so that the batter would not spill over. 11. Cupcakes were done in about 20 minutes 12. Cake was done in about 50 minutes 13. I cooked in a 325 degree oven The house smells like the holidays and I can't wait to slice it up after dinner. Enjoy!
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Photo by Nicole Crenshaw Hill

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Baked Ham and Cheese Party Sandwiches

Reviewed: Nov. 25, 2014
These are always a huge hit!
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Home Town: Mchenry, Illinois, USA
Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Grandmother's Buttermilk Cornbread

Reviewed: Nov. 25, 2014
This is the best cornbread ever!
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Home Town: Mchenry, Illinois, USA
Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Fluffy Pancakes

Reviewed: Nov. 23, 2014
Delicious! My husband said they were possibly the best pancakes he's ever had. I added half a teaspoon of vanilla. Great recipe!
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Brunswick, Georgia, USA
Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Super Bowl Bites

Reviewed: Nov. 23, 2014
They're messy making them difficult finger food, but they are oh so good.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Mexican Rice II

Reviewed: Nov. 23, 2014
Wonderful. Throw in some protein and this is a meal by itself.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Great Spinach Balls

Reviewed: Nov. 22, 2014
Excellent! Not dry like others......as long as you follow the recipe.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Living In: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

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Chef John's Coq Au Vin

Reviewed: Nov. 22, 2014
I've been thinking about making coq au vin for a while and finally settled on this recipe after watching the video. Perfection!! I will make this again and again.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Brunswick, Georgia, USA
Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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Spinach Balls

Reviewed: Nov. 22, 2014
Excellent. Less dry than others, if you follow the recipe.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Living In: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

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Pancake Casserole

Reviewed: Nov. 17, 2014
My husband and I thought this was pretty good, but certainly not a 5-star. There was something about it that is a little off. It is basically a cake with some cheese and bacon on top. The word "casserole" in the name threw me off a little. It is not what I consider a casserole. If I were to make it again, I would leave the cheese off of the top. The crumbled bacon is a good flavor with maple syrup, but cheese is just weird with syrup. This was a trial run to decide whether to make this in the cabin for Thanksgiving breakfast with our family, and I am not feeling real confident about it.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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High Temperature Eye-of-Round Roast

Reviewed: Nov. 12, 2014
I do tweak this recipe, but the basics are the same. I make a paste using 1T olive oil, 1T kosher salt, 1/4tsp black pepper, 1/2t rosemary, 1/2t dried thyme. Cover the roast with the paste (top, bottom, both ends) and I cook just as directed. I have never had a bad roast using this method!
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Living In: Augusta, Georgia, USA

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Southern Cornbread Dressing

Reviewed: Nov. 11, 2014
Great recipe. If you add chicken thighs to the pot with your chicken breasts (and increase the water accordingly) the liquid you reserve will be much more rich and flavorful. (You can skin the chicken thighs after cooking and use them in giblet gravy, for chicken salad, or for BBQ chicken sandwiches on a different day. (The meat freezes well to be reheated for sandwiches later.) Doing this made the dressing MUCH more flavorful.
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Photo by Lynn Houck Fendlason

Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Birmingham, Alabama, USA

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