The ingredients are incomplete and/or confusing. What is "1 dried lentils" 1 cup, 1 bag, 1 pound? Also, the directions say to add water but it's n...

...ot listed in the ingredients. How much? Add water according to package directions? It won't be possible to test this as written

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Lentil Ratatouille
Recipe question for: Lentil Ratatouille

18 Comments

Bevi September 30, 2015
It is disconcerting to try to follow a recipe with incomplete or incorrect ingredients due to a slip up on the part of the recipe's author. ( I am guilty of that on a few occasions). I think it would be reasonable on the part of food52 staff to contact a user whose recipe is up for a possible CPN when the ingredient deck or the instructions are incomplete or unclear to get clarification.
 
Niknud September 28, 2015
I agree with the case in question. However, that being said and having suffered from typos, hangovers, sleep deprivation and other catastrophies while submitting receipes, I am always open to questions and try to respond quickly if one comes up. And, unlike other sites, I have found most of the folks here on F52 completely friendly and open to questions about their recipes. I'm all for clarity but (since I'm not a professional or even a ranked amateur) I appreciate the good humor and flexibility that most of my online food-nerdy friends show me and I try to extend to others.
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Susan W. September 28, 2015
My post disappeared, but thank you for perfectly putting into words what I was thinking.
 
Stephanie September 28, 2015
I certainly agree that "stuff happens" - no big deal, generally. But it is rather frustrating that the powers that be would select an incomplete recipe for inclusion as a contest finalist. It's awfully hard to test a recipe that's missing - and why I asked the question. Not with malice or any intention of projecting a holier than thou attitude - though my frustration seems to have been inadvertently projected anyway. I do appreciate how responsive and receptive people are - certainly agree with you on that.
 
Niknud September 28, 2015
Hahaha - I think we can all agree that nobody's in trouble. Maybe enough to get "disappointed Mom-face" but not enough to get "sent to their room to think about what they've done." I agree with both those that expressed their frustration as well as those that are a bit more indulgent. Maybe because I've both horked up a posting before (see this week's recipe), and had a scratch-my-head moment at 2 T of salt where I think it was meant to be 2 t.
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Susan W. September 28, 2015
We're all human and this is a site that encourages home cooks. Want perfection? Start your own site. See how that goes. I'm sending EVERYONE to their room.
 
boulangere September 29, 2015
I'll repeat, Susan W, given the rounds and amounts of funding that Food52 has received, not to mention the sheer number of editors of this, that, and the other thing, it has, one would think that recipes tossed out for CP and finalist testing would at least have been read through.
 
702551 September 25, 2015
I have some equally strong opinions about online recipes (or anything else on the Internet): there is no copy editing on the Internet.

The Internet is full of garbage information that is poorly vetted and edited. Many times, we have seen Food52 recipes submitted by individuals that differ from the same recipe published elsewhere.

This isn't a specific criticism of Food52.com. This is prevalent all over the Internet, whether it be food, technology, auto repair, whatever.

When you see a "recipe" or other instruction set on the Internet, view it with great skepticism. There is a great likelihood that it is simply wrong.\

Anyhow, the next time you find an anomaly in a Food52 recipe, just contact the author. After all, they are the authority on the document in question.

Good luck.
 
Stephanie September 28, 2015
So true. Wouldn't life be better if a copy editor followed everyone around? (Well maybe not "better" but certainly more clear!)
 
Susan W. September 28, 2015
I appreciate this site because it's such a mix of "professionals" who think they know everything (they don't) to kids in High School who have never boiled water. Quit trying to change the site people. It's wonderful the way it is.
 
Stephanie September 28, 2015
@Susan W I agree that the variety is an asset. Certainly wasn't trying to suggest that the site be changed, I was really just looking for clarity on a recipe that I wanted to test as a Community Pick (one that I might not have tried so quickly without that catalyst) but couldn't test as written. I do recognize that my tone my have been a little more brusque than necessary - apologies if it gave offense.
 

Voted the Best Reply!

boulangere September 25, 2015
I have rather strong feelings on this issue. I've tested many recipes for contests, and the majority of them work beautifully. The ones that don't have problems just as you've listed, generally falling under the heading of incomplete or missing information. I've never understood how such recipes wind up in the running for anything. Surely, to have reached that point, they've been tested by Food 52, and surely someone would have noticed errors or inconsistencies and not have included the recipe in the testing list. You have every right to expect that a recipe you choose to test is complete and accurate, certainly without searching the internet for a better version of it. If a recipe is submitted to Food 52 a contest entry, I'd suggest that it be tested in that version. And if the recipe you've chosen in impossible to test in that condition, say so in your review.
 
Stephanie September 28, 2015
You perfectly voiced my frustration. Thank you.
 
sexyLAMBCHOPx September 28, 2015
I never thought that Food52 tests CP's, unless down the line they're up for a wild card. So many changes with the site.
 
ChefJune September 28, 2015
I agree, Cynthia. I'm sad to say I've seen quite a bit of what seemto be careless mistakes in recipes here on Food52. Both submitters of recipes and creators of recipes really need to be more assiduous in checking and proofreading before hitting the "send" button. :(
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boulangere September 29, 2015
When the Cps for each contest are announced, slcx, they are segregated into two groups: those tested and photographed by "us," meaning the Food52 staff; and those tested by "you," meaning us, of which there are no photographs.

What I meant to say, is that one would think that recipes would at least be vetted, even if minimally, before being tossed out for testing. Like reading them to see if, in the case of this recipe, to see if the ingredient list is complete, which it obviously isn't, so how did it end up in the testing pile? Errors and omissions, misspellings grammatical errors are getting through with greater frequency, unfortunately. I agree, June: it's all gotten a bit sloppy.
 
sexyLAMBCHOPx September 25, 2015
She has the recipe on her blog. Here it is: lentil ratatouille
Makes 2-3 big servings (if serving with pastas or rice, its more like 4-5 servings)

1 medium zucchini
1 medium yellow summer squash
1 medium onion
1 small eggplant
3-4 cloves garlic
1 cup dried lentils
1/2 cup water
3 medium to large tomatoes
handful fresh basil leaves
a few glugs of balsamic vinegar
couple sprigs of fresh oregano
olive oil
salt and pepper
Drizzle a little olive oil into a large pot. Dice up the onion and place on medium heat and cook for a few minutes. Mince up the garlic and chop up the remaining veggies into medium sized pieces. Once the onion is cooke a bit and strting to smell oh so nice, toss the veggies and garlic into the pot. Mix, sprinkle with salt and pepper and place a lid on it. Cook for a few minutes to draw out a bit of liquid from the veggies. Now add in the lentils and the water. Stick the lid back on and let cook for about 30 minutes on medium low heat or until the lentils are starting to soften.

When the lentils are mostly soft, but still have a bit of biet, dice the fresh herbs and toss into pot with a few swings of balsamic vinegar. Stir and cook for another 8-10 minutes or until the lentils are full cooked.

Remove from heat and ladle into bowls..

Serve with rice, pasta, bread, a big old pile of fresh greens, or just as it is.

Eats fantastic right aways, or cold late at night standing in front of the fridge..
 
Stephanie September 25, 2015
Helpful, thanks! I didn't even think to look for a blog post - duh.
 
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