More than 30 Recipes That Changed the Way You Cooked This Year

December 26, 2016

We've already shared the 50 recipes you loved the most this year based on how much you favorited, saved, and commented on them (Hint: a lot).

But we also wanted to hear about the recipes that changed the way you cooked this year: the ones that are old but new to you, the ones you made over and over (and over) again, and the ones with a too-smart-not-to-share tip lurking within. Here are over 30 recipes, from our site and far beyond, that our community thinks might change the way you cook next year.

1. Savory Apple Tart Flambée: "The flavors together were absolutely incredible and I used the cast iron method which had the crispiest edges. It was also my first time using the Lahey no-knead dough."

Shop the Story

2. Yotam Ottolenghi's Sweet Corn Polenta with Eggplant Sauce: "I had doubts while making this that it wouldn't turn out great but my goodness it was amazing. I think it was the perfect late-summer meal. I froze some of the eggplant sauce and had it recently over regular creamy polenta and I was reminded of just how wonderful this dish was."

  • Niknud says, “If I had to choose one, I would say it's the Prawns with Tomato, Olives and Arak from Ottolenghi. It's been out in the world for a while now, but I made it several times this year and am always impressed with it. It's quick enough for a weeknight, but fancy enough for a dinner party. Plus, all the delicious broth—I buy extra bread just for the broth. Out of season, I've found canned tomatoes work just as well as fresh. And with canned tomatoes you get extra juice which means...extra broth!”

  • Luvcookbooks adds, “the revelatory homemade falafel from Honey and Co., as well as several of their baked chicken recipes with amazing Middle Eastern flavors. The falafel are so different made at home than any I have ever eaten out, and the chicken is flavorful through and through and has a delicious melting texture.”

  • Susan W says, “For the first time, I joined a beef and pork CSA called Butcher Box. I love it. Meats from all pasture-raised, grass-fed animals. I've never bought brisket before because I'm not fond of it. Wrong... I now love it. I also hadn't cooked beef or pork cheeks before, but love them. Aargersi’s Barbacoa is incredible. I actually used pork cheeks. I've been dreaming of both of these recipes since I made them.

  • Hardlikearmour shares, “Recipe of the year for me is the Hawaiian Pizza from The Elements of Pizza by Ken Forkish—it’s the only pizza I put on the permanent summer pizza gathering menu. Why is it better than every other Hawaiian pizza? It calls for roasting the pineapple (and onion) before topping the pizza which makes it infinitely better. It also calls for an optional step of spreading bacon fat on the dough before saucing it which I say should not be optional.”

  • Ktr says, “I made this recipe (both with chicken thighs and a spatchcocked whole chicken) over and over again this year. And I finally got around to making stock out of the bones. After getting into the habit of making it, I can't believe I waited so long to learn how. My other favorite of the year was this pressure cooker pork recipe. My family loved it and it was simple enough to make on a weeknight. The cabbage is so good that my husband, who will eat cabbage but doesn't really care for it, loved it.”

  • Nancy chose Molly Yeh's Rye Challah, explaining: “This was my favorite recipe (discovery) this year because it has a perfect balance that I didn't even know was missing in other rye bread recipes. What I call the Goldilocks effect (it was just right). It had enough rye, but not too much. Was moist, but still held together. Was perfect with soups, as a sandwich base, as toast.”

  • Drbabs has three standouts to share:

1. “Lion’s Head meatballs from the first Lucky Peach cookbook. I make them at least once a month and always make enough to freeze a batch. (I use ground turkey in place of pork.)”

2. “Also from a new cookbook, A Modern Way to Cook, the lentils with roast tomatoes and horseradish sauce is wonderful. Cooking the lentils in vegetable broth with garlic and tomato and herbs is genius.”

3. “And The River Cottage’s Bouillon recipe has transformed my cooking. I read the comments, cut back the salt, and left out the cilantro (my husband hates it). I use it as the salt element in nearly all savory dishes. It adds flavor and depth.”

  • Laura says, "Chicken Cacciatore changed my life and got me cooking again. Now I make huge batches to freeze to eat after work on crazy-busy days."

Tell us: What recipe changed the way you cooked this year?

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

I like esoteric facts about vegetables. Author of the IACP Award-nominated cookbook, Cooking with Scraps.