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Tanya Steel is a well-known food writer and Editor-in-Chief of the award-winning food Web site, Before joining Epicurious, Steel was the New York Editor of Bon Appetit magazine, where[…]

Indigenous ingredients.

Question: What makes a great recipe?


Tanya Steel: The ingredients for a great recipe are something that is accessible, I would say. It’s important that people can get whatever ingredients they’re calling for. Ultra seasonal is another thing. That’s very important, I think, for a great recipe.

You’re not going to use kind of Fuji apples from New Zealand because you know that they have come thousands and thousands of miles and they may not be that fresh. You’re going to use something that’s much more indigenous to right where you live.

And then something . . . a recipe that has been clearly written; because I have worked with a lot of chefs in the past, and chef recipes are particularly hard. They are written in these kind of wild ways that presume a ton of knowledge and usually make great quantities of food. So chef recipes are always the most difficult with us . . . for us to work with.

January 17, 2008