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Podcasts to make you a better cook: from ‘milestone recipes’ to foraging ethics

·3 min read

Recipe Club

What’s so great about this podcast is that the recipes under discussion are, by and large, sourced the way most of us decide what to cook for dinner: by Googling. The hosts, Momofuku founder and chef David Chang and Lucky Peach magazine editor Chris Ying, invite guest chefs to pick a recipe of their choosing on the theme of the day, which is usually something standard – mashed potato, tinned tuna, instant ramen – although there are a bunch of household brands with which non-US listeners will be unfamiliar. They then cook and dissect, with edgy banter and audience input (all the recipes are listed on the Ringer; the pod has its own Facebook community). A bit millennial, a bit punk, very entertaining.

Honey and Co: The Food Talks

Over the eight seasons that the restaurateurs and columnists Itamar Srulovich and Sarit Packer have hosted this podcast, guests from across the (mostly British) foodie spectrum have brought stories to the table that firmly lodge flavours in your mind. Iraqi-American sculptor Michael Rakowitz tells a great tale about an art commission he did in New York that involved a high-end restaurant, an eBay auction and a cease-and-desist request from the White House; you come out of all of this with a tip for making what he calls Iraqi Nutella (tahini mixed with date syrup) that you will never forget. Cooking, as guest Andi Oliver puts it in one episode, is both an escape route and a way of finding beauty.

The Genius Recipe Tapes

The world might be awash with cookbooks, but milestone recipes – the true keepers, the kind that fundamentally change what you do in the kitchen – are hard to come by. In each episode of this Food52 podcast, the food writer Kristen Miglore focuses on one such recipe, taken from the eponymous column she’s edited on the site for a decade. She details what held her attention about the recipe – from the way Rachel Roddy slow-cooks her beans in the oven, to the whole lemon Ruth Rogers puts in a startling strawberry sorbet – and unpicks, with the author, how it came together.

Point of Origin

Since 2019, Stephen Satterfield (the man behind the foodie magazine Whetstone and the Netflix special High on the Hog) has examined – in one of the world’s more listenable voices – the big questions our global food systems pose. His reporting is incisive and his dedication to exploring overlooked perspectives and featuring oppressed peoples is resolute. From the morality of meat eating to the politics of foraging on stolen lands, by way of Palestinian arak, Mexican avocados and Burundian coffee, this is the disruptive culinary travelogue that anyone concerned about the ethics of their food needs to hear.

Farmerama Radio

Co-hosts Abby Rose and Jo Barratt have been investigating what agriculture in the UK and beyond looks like – and what it could be – in this award-winning podcast, covering everything from vegan milk makers to the people who have fed us during the pandemic. Rarely have the knotty issues of how food is farmed been handled so deftly. Bread, the first episode in a series on grain, asks: “How did something so basic, so fundamental, get so complicated – and even make us ill?” This show asks arresting questions, and gives hopeful answers.

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